We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What are the Causes of Ear and Tooth Pain?

By Amanda Barnhart
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
The Health Board is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At The Health Board, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The most common causes of ear and tooth pain include infections, fluid buildup in the ear, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome, cavities, and tooth impaction. Ear and tooth pain often occur simultaneously due to the closeness of the nerves and other tissues in the face and head. While some causes of pain in these areas are serious, most pain is caused by minor infections or illnesses that can be easily treated by a doctor or dentist.

Ear and tooth infections are the most common causes of pain in these areas. Pain deep inside the ear may radiate down the jaw if caused by a middle ear infection, and may be also present with a fever and fluid drainage from the ear. An infection in the ear canal, outer ear, or the mastoid bone behind the ear can also cause pain. These types of infections often occur with redness and swelling of the outer ear or the area around the ear, and require prompt medical attention. Infections of the teeth or gums due to poor oral hygiene, abscesses, or conditions such as gingivitis can also lead to pain in the mouth that may also affect the ear.

Fluid that builds up inside the ear can lead to pain and pressure. The discomfort may extend down the jaw and affect the teeth as well. Eustachian tubes inside the ears can become blocked with fluid due to sinus pressure from a cold or the flu. Over-the-counter decongestants can help dry up excess fluid, and a warm compress or heating pad applied to the ear or jaw can help minimize pain. In severe cases, doctors can drain the fluid from the ear or implant tubes in the eardrums to stabilize pressure inside the ears.

Ear and tooth pain that occurs at the same time is common for people who suffer from TMJ syndrome. The temporomandibular joints on either side of the jaw can become dislocated or suffer from wear on the cartilage disks that cushion the joints, resulting in pain that may occur at the jaw joint, in the ear, or in the teeth. Treatment for TMJ syndrome includes mouth guards, jaw exercises, and bite therapy to help align the jaw and reduce clenching and grinding, which can make symptoms worse.

Dental problems, including cavities and tooth impaction, often lead to ear and tooth pain. Pain from problems that affect the roots of the tooth can manifest in the mouth, up the jawline to the ear, or over the entire side of the face. Wisdom teeth located at the back of the mouth often become impacted and must be removed by an oral surgeon if they lead to pain or other dental problems.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By anon1005504 — On Sep 12, 2021

I had these symptoms and it was due to a sinus infection. Pain from fluid in ear radiated through the jaw to my teeth.

By literally45 — On Oct 06, 2013

@MikeMason-- If you know the cause of your ear and tooth pain and have seen a doctor, that's fine. But unexplained ear and tooth pain is something to worry about.

My uncle had these symptoms for a long time and chose to ignore them. When his wife finally convinced him to see a doctor, he had lost so much time. He was diagnosed with stage three oral cancer!

People think that oral cancer always causes mouth sores and discoloration. But severe tooth pain and ear pain are also symptoms of oral cancer. It's best to see a doctor right away.

By candyquilt — On Oct 05, 2013

@MikeMason-- I had that happen to me after a root canal! I had a toothache, earache and a headache! It was quite bad but the pain relievers helped. I think it has more to do with connected nerves.

By stoneMason — On Oct 05, 2013

Whenever I have a tooth infection, I get pain not only in my jaw but also in my ear on the same side. I've asked my dentist about this and he says that the mouth and ear are connected through canals. When there is pain on one side, it's normal to feel pain in the other as well.

Before I learned about this, I thought that I had some kind of infection that was affecting my tooth and my ear.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.