Oral pain is something that nobody wants to deal with, especially if it becomes increasingly prominent and begins affecting other areas of your face. While proper oral care is vital to avoid this, there can be a variety of conditions that may still affect you, regardless of how well you look after your mouth and teeth. As one of the leading experts in tooth and mouth care in Los Angeles, here at Smile Angels of Beverly Hills, we know how important it can be to get rid of this pain as quickly and effectively as possible.
Any kind of oral pain can prevent a variety of issues for all of us, with the most obvious of these being in talking and eating. Naturally, we’ll all want to avoid this. Though many people may be afraid of going to a dentist, cosmetic or otherwise, this shouldn’t be the case, as we have your best interests at heart and want to ensure that you’re needs are met. This means that, here at Smile Angels of Beverly Hills, we focus on getting you back to an oral pain-free life as quickly as possible; after all, putting a smile on your face is our job.
Being founded in Beverly Hills by Bruce Vafa DDS. over two decades ago, we’ve developed a significant amount of expertise in treating every kind of oral and maxillofacial pain. As a result, we know exactly what it takes to treat whatever pain you’re experiencing around your face. However, many people may be confused as to what’s involved in the treatment process, as well as whether or not a cosmetic dentist can help them with their needs.
With that in mind, we’re here to highlight how you can get rid of any oral or maxillofacial pain quickly and easily, with a minimum of fuss. But first, it’s worth taking a look at exactly what this treatment entails, as well as how we can help you should you experience it. Armed with the right amount of knowledge, you’ll be back to feeling like yourself in no time.
What Is Oral & Maxillofacial Pain?
Many people will know what oral pain is, although they may become confused when it comes to maxillofacial pain. This is a type of pain that affects your lower face, more specifically your mouth and lower jaw. While the majority of people will believe that oral hygiene is the primary factor in this, it isn’t the only thing that can make an impact on your oral pain.
Causes of Oral & Maxillofacial Pain
This is primarily because the bones around your face, as well as the muscles and nerves, can play a significant part in whether or not you feel any pain, especially when talking or eating. One of the more notable areas that can affect this is sinus issues, which is something that many people may not realize. This typically results in the feeling of pressure across your face, which can also affect your teeth. However, this is one of the easier issues to treat, as there are a considerable number of medications that can treat it.
Temporomandibular disorders, or TMDs, can also play a role in this, with the term being used to referred to muscle disorders or issues that may be causing the pain. These can often result in various symptoms, such as headaches, jaw locking, muscle soreness across your jaw, ear and neck. There can be various causes of TMD, with a few being more common than others. Chief among these are:
- Acute trauma, either directly or indirectly to the jaw or surrounding area. This typically includes any injuries to the face, such as motorbike accidents or sports injuries.
- Chronic micro trauma, which typically includes small, but ongoing trauma, such as the continual chewing of hard or tough foods.
- Stress. While this isn’t one of the most common causes of oral pain, it has been noted that people with TMDs often have a considerably higher level of stress. However, it’s unclear whether this is a result of the pain or a driver of it.
While excessive and ongoing pain is the most notable part of the condition, there are a variety of other factors, many of which may start long before the pain does. One of the first to occur is a clicking or popping sound, which will most often be seen when you’re eating. This will typically be heard from around your jaw and in front of your ears. The way you bite may also feel different for a considerable amount of time before you start feeling any soreness. While these may not exclusively lead to oral or maxillofacial pain, they can be an indicator that there’s something wrong, which means that you should have your jaw and the surrounding area looked at if they persist.
Treatment Options in Los Angeles
Depending on your particular case, there can be a variety of treatment options available to you. The first of these is medication, with perhaps the most common being an anticonvulsant, which tackles any damaged nerves that may be causing the pain. This is especially true when it comes to nociceptor damage, which often leads to the build-up of sodium in your neurons. In the majority of cases, these sodium concentrates can result in spontaneous pain, which can be an ongoing issue for many patients. An anticonvulsant focuses on breaking down these sodium build ups, helping to relieve and treat the pain that you may be facing.
However, this isn’t the only medication that can be used to treat oral and maxillofacial pain, as there have been several studies released in the past few years focusing on the efficiency of other drugs. Chief among these have been carbamazepine or oxcarbazepine, which have typically been used to treat neuralgia, bipolar disorder, and seizures. Alongside anticonvulsants, these medications have become increasingly common as a first-line approach to managing the pain. Should these fail, however, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t other medications that can be used.
These second-line medications can include baclofen, which has often been used as a muscle relaxer. By utilizing the drug, the muscles in your face may then stop causing any pain, although this mightn’t be effective if the cause is because of an infection or some issue with a bone or tooth. Lamotrigine, another bipolar medication, has also been shown to affect chronic pain. While studies are still in their early stages, there are a few other second-line medicines that may be effective for oral or maxillofacial pain, including:
- Lamictal, and;
- Pregabalin, each of which have typically been used as anti-seizure or bipolar medications.
Painkillers have naturally played quite a role in managing the problem, although this may often not treat the underlying issue, whereas some of the above may be able to do so. This has primarily been on show with opiates, although they may not be effective long-term; this is typically because you may need large doses, which can often come with several side effects, such as sedation.
Should none of these prove to be effective, then surgery may be the only option left, which means that you’ll need to make an appointment with a dental surgeon. In the majority of cases, the pain will be treated with what’s known as a rhizotomy. During this operation, an oral surgeon will aim to destroy the pain fibers, namely in the A and C deltas in your nerve root. However, this will only be an option in particular cases, although there are other surgical options available. You may need to undergo a gangliolysis, which targets pain fibers in the trigeminal ganglion.
The exact surgery that you may have to undergo can vary drastically on your particular case, which means that you’ll need to consult a dental surgeon to examine the cause of your pain. It should also be noted that these surgeries aren’t permanent, and you may only see the effects for it for between one and two years. This means that you’ll need to revisit the surgeon regularly; similar to which treatments are available, however, this can often depend on your specific case. The primary reason behind this is the fact that the fibers or nerves that are causing the pain can regrow, which will be at different rates for everybody.
Getting rid of the pain, you might be facing is something that you should get seen to straight away, as a nagging throb can quickly turn into something much worse. Since being founded by Bruce Vafa DDS., we’ve become the leading Beverly Hills based cosmetic surgeries, providing a high-quality service to the greater Los Angeles community. As such, you can rest easy knowing that your oral and maxillofacial pain will be treated quickly and easily, and shouldn’t become a problem for the foreseeable future.
As we mentioned above, there can be a variety of alternatives to surgery, with preventative measures being among these. This is something that we can help you with, so what’s stopping you from making an appointment and taking care of all of your dental needs?