Jaw Pain: Signs And Symptoms You Need To Recognize

When your jaw is hurting, it’s time to contact an oral surgeon Fairfax VA. It may seem like something minor that you can live with, but pain always means that something bad is happening. Depending on the symptoms, this can be nothing more than a toothache or a serious condition like a heart attack.

Here’s what you need to know about dealing with jaw pain and how to properly categorize it. There are several problems that your jaw can be the heart of a lot of problems so you’re going to have to check out the symptoms on each one.

TMJ Problems

The temporo-mandibular joints are what connects your jaw to your skull. This is usually what causes jaw problems for people. It’s actually pretty common with 1 in 8 people reporting TMJ problems. There are several symptoms that indicate a TMJ problem. This includes clicking sounds when you close your jaws, headaches, and earaches. This is because of the connect of your jaw to the nerves in your head.

The cause of TMJ problems is usually arthritis or stress. Treatment usually comes in the form of medication or even therapeutic exercise for the muscles around your jaw. It will be best to consult your oral surgeon Fairfax VA what’s the best treatment approach.

Dental Trauma

The pain in your jaw may stem from something as simple as a toothache. This usually means that there is a serious tooth problem though. Cracked teeth or even gum disease are the usual results. Treatment for this will usually be a visit to a dentist to see what can be done.


There are actually several diseases that have jaw pain as part of their symptoms. A lot of them are avoided by vaccination, but vaccines do eventually run out and you may not be up-to-date in your shots. These diseases can be very bad though.

The first one is the mumps. Yes, the dreaded mumps, which is the bane of children, can also infect older people. Caused by a virus, it infects the glands that produce saliva, which are in your jaw. They make them swell up, causing the pain. This should be easy enough to treat.

The more terrible disease that causes jaw pain is tetanus. Caused by a bacterial infection, whether it is through a cut or a scratch, tetanus causes your jaw to lock up. In the past, this was deadly, and can still be. At best, you will be laid up in the hospital for several weeks for treatment and recovery. The earlier it is caught, the better the chances for recovery.

Heart Attack

Surprisingly, jaw pain can be a symptom of an impending heart attack. A lot of the pain that heart attacks cause come from clusters of nerves and this is reflected in other parts of the body. The jaw has a sizable cluster of nerves that can receive this pain, which is called referred pain. Some people actually experience jaw pain as their only symptom before a heart attack. Referred pain can also hint at joint problems in other parts of the body.

Northern Virginia Oral, Maxillofacial & Implant Surgery offer a wide range of dental procedures to help you bring that perfect smile back. If you need an oral surgeon Fairfax VA, contact us today.

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Ross Cameron

Ross Cameron

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