Orofacial pain is the technical term for any pain felt of the jaw, inside the mouth, or on other parts of the face. This is a common issue. In fact, 22% of Americans claim they had some kind of facial pain in a six month period and nearly all have experienced it at multiple points in their lifetime.
The most common type of orofacial pain is a dental issue – namely a toothache. This cause is followed by Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD), a condition where the joint that works your jaw has been damaged in some way so as to create pain; in fact. 10-15% of the population reportedly has TMD. The rest of the time, causes of orofacial pain vary. Oral cancer, headaches, Burning Mouth Syndrome, or Cracked Tooth Syndrome are some possible causes.
Proper treatment of your orofacial pain depends upon the specific diagnosis and its cause. If you have a toothache, it’s important to see Dr. Jose Lopez as soon as possible. If you have a cavity, you’ll need a dental filling or crown; if bacteria has entered the soft tissue inside your tooth, you’ll need a root canal. If you have TMD, JF Lopez DDS, MD, RPh, PA can fit you with a customized, comfortable mouth guard to wear. We also may suggest physical therapy and stress reduction techniques.
While you seek professional help, there are also temporary treatments you can try at home. Try placing a soft cold gel pack along your cheek for 20 minutes at a time. This will reduce inflammation. You can also take an over-the-counter pain medicine like an aspirin or ibuprofen.
If you have any questions about your orofacial pain, don’t hesitate to contact our office in Houston, Texas at 713-481-5690 today!