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  • Dr. Barry Yu


Toothache headache

Have you ever experienced a headache and wondered if there might be a dental connection? Surprisingly, a toothache can be the hidden culprit behind your head misery.

The trigeminal nerve, responsible for sending sensation information from your face to your brain, plays a crucial role in this connection. When a tooth is irritated or infected, this irritation travels along the trigeminal nerve pathway, potentially triggering a headache. Conversely, a severe headache can even cause you to feel pain in your teeth!

Additionally, bruxism, or teeth grinding, can contribute to headaches. The constant clenching and grinding of teeth can lead to muscle tension in the jaw, neck, and shoulders, intensifying discomfort and potentially triggering headaches.

While headaches can have various causes, certain signs indicate that your headache might be tooth-related:

toothache headache

One-sided pain:

If your headache throbs in the same area as your toothache, it's more likely to be tooth-related.

Pain intensifies with chewing:

Increased pain in your head when you chew can indicate a dental problem.

toothache headache

Sensitivity to hot or cold:

Tooth sensitivity accompanying a toothache is common.

Swollen gums or visible damage:

Puffiness around your gums or visible tooth damage are clear signs of a dental issue.

toothache headache

If you suspect your toothache is causing your headache, take these steps:

See a dentist ASAP:

Ignoring a toothache can worsen the problem. A dentist can diagnose the issue and recommend the best treatment, whether it's a filling, root canal, or extraction.

toothache headache

Pain relievers for temporary relief:

Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can offer temporary relief until you see a dentist.

Remember, while this article explores the connection between headaches and toothaches, it is not a substitute for professional medical or dental advice. If you're experiencing persistent headaches or toothaches, consult your doctor and dentist for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Taking care of your dental health not only keeps your smile healthy but might also prevent future headaches.

To understand more about teeth grinding or bruxism, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about toothache on one side, CLICK HERE.



About Authors


Graduated with honors from the University of California, Davis (U.S.A.), major in biochemistry and molecular biology, Dr. Yu has further obtained his dental degree (Doctor of Dental Medicine) from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine (U.S.A.).  Dr. Yu is qualified to practice in the US, Singapore and Hong Kong, and has over 10 years of practicing experience in the US before starting both practices in Hong Kong and Singapore.


Dr. Chrissie Lam graduated from University of California, Berkeley (U.S.A.) with a bachelor degree in Nutritional Science before earning her doctorate degree in dentistry from University of the Pacific, Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry (U.S.A.). In her 10 years of practice she took care of her patients, both in U.S.A. and Singapore with her warm demeanor and excellent clinical skills. 

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