Does your child have a toothache or a sinus infection? Their face hurts—and so do their molars. Before you treat the pain, take a look at the possible causes, the symptoms that warrant a call to the pediatric dentistry practice, and the best ways to stop dental discomfort.
What Could Cause Your Child to Have Facial Pain?
You have two primary concerns—their sinuses and their teeth. But which one is at fault? It's possible that both are the cause of your child's discomfort. It's also possible that neither their sinuses nor their teeth are the problem.
While sinus infections, dental decay (cavities), dental infections, and other issues (such as periodontitis) can cause facial pain, the symptoms of each potential problem and the type of discomfort are often different.
Sinus pain may cause discomfort in the top, back part of your child's mouth. It may also cause a diffuse or dull, achy type of facial pain or pressure that they feel above or below their eyes or around the cheek area. Along with pain and pressure, they may also have nasal discharge, congestion, fussiness, or a fever.
Unlike sinus-related facial issues, dental pain is often sharp or intense. Your child may also experience sensitivity to cold, hot, or sweet foods and beverages. Dental decay, infections, and tooth injuries won't cause nasal symptoms. While a dental infection can raise their temperature, a minor cavity or injury won't cause a fever.
When Should You Call the Pediatric Dentist?
More specifically, should you call the dentist or the doctor when your child has facial pain? If you're not sure whether a sinus infection or dental issue is at fault, you could contact the dentist and the pediatrician. But don't wait to make these calls. The sooner you get a diagnosis, the sooner you can treat the problem.
What Types of Treatments Are Available?
Your child doesn't have to suffer through facial pain. Again, the first step to treatment is a dentist's diagnosis. If the pain is truly sinus-related and you haven't called your doctor, you will need to make a medical appointment. But if the pain is coming from their teeth, the dentist is the first stop.
Treatments depend on the cause of the pain. If your child has a cavity, the dentist will need to remove (drill) the decay and fill the tooth. A significant dental infection may require a prescription antibiotic.
Like cavities, injuries also require restorations. A deep crack or large chip may also require extraction and replacement. The dentist may choose a crown or dental bonding to repair less severe types of damage.
Reach out to a pediatric dentistry to learn more.