Man with a toothache touches his cheek.

Sensitive Teeth? Spring Allergies May Be the Culprit

It’s that time of year again. As flowers open up and trees begin to bud, you may be experiencing the unpleasant symptoms of seasonal allergies. Spring in Missouri means high pollen counts, as oaks, maples, walnuts and more produce new leaves and blooms. 

Many people suffer from seasonal allergies. If you’re experiencing toothaches along with sniffing and sneezing, your spring allergies may be the cause. 

A woman with seasonal allergies blows her nose with a tissue.

Inside Your Sinus Cavities 

You have several pairs of sinus cavities located near your eyes, forehead and cheekbones. Each sinus cavity is lined with a mucus membrane that can become aggravated by allergy triggers. 

The largest sinus cavities are your maxillary sinuses, which are underneath your eyes and beside your cheeks. Maxillary sinuses produce mucus to moisten the nasal passages and protect us from the dust, dirt and bacteria we breathe in.

How Can My Sinuses Affect My Teeth?

Congestion and sinus pressure can cause tooth pain. Depending on their size, your maxillary sinuses may fall near the roots of your upper molars. When these sinus cavities are inflamed, they can push down on the roots of your upper teeth, causing discomfort or pain.

People with larger sinus cavities may experience tooth sensitivity, discomfort when eating, or throbbing tooth pain because of allergy symptoms. 

Sensitivity caused from inflamed sinuses affects multiple teeth and only lasts a short while. Only the upper molars are likely to be affected because their roots are closest to the maxillary sinus cavities. You should talk to a dentist if your tooth pain doesn’t go away after your other allergy symptoms subside.

Common Causes of Sensitive Teeth

Before you blame your toothache on seasonal allergies, ask yourself these questions. Are your teeth normally sensitive to hot or cold beverages? Do your teeth usually hurt when you brush or floss? If so, your sensitivity may be caused by something else. 

The following can cause sensitivity and tooth pain:

  • Decay
  • Tooth fracture
  • Old fillings
  • Exposed roots
  • Worn enamel

If you don’t suffer from seasonal allergies or your tooth pain isn’t in your upper molars, you may be dealing with a more serious problem. You should consult a dentist if you’re experiencing severe pain or regular tooth sensitivity.

A dogwood tree in bloom.

Combating Spring Allergies

How can you fight against allergies and find toothache relief? Try these tips if you’re suffering from spring allergy symptoms. 

  • Go outside in the afternoon. Pollen counts are usually higher in the mornings from around 5 a.m. to 10 a.m. Schedule your outdoor activities for the afternoon when pollen counts are lower. 
  • Stay indoors on windy days. The wind spreads pollen from many of Missouri’s trees and bushes. Limiting time outdoors on windy days reduces your exposure to pollen in the air. A great time to go outside is after a rain when pollen has cleared. 
  • Close doors and windows. If allergies are causing you trouble, don’t leave doors and windows open, especially at night. Keeping the windows shut will help keep pollen from invading your home.
  • Take over the counter medication. Try to treat your allergy symptoms before they start. If you have seasonal allergies, you can take over-the-counter medications like loratadine or cetirizine. Over-the-counter pain relievers may help soothe any tooth pain caused by sinus pressure. Always follow the directions when taking over-the-counter medications and consult your doctor if you have any concerns. 

Sore teeth? 

If your sensitivity or tooth pain persists, contact our dentists at Ukena Brandes Family Dental. We’re here to help your smile—in every season.