Tooth Pain While Running?

Get Tooth Pain While Running?

Tooth Pain While Running

Experiencing tooth pain during or after your run?

I’ve been told by many people recently that they experience tooth pain when they run or jog. Some have even told me that other exercises have ended in them feeling tooth and gum pain or sensitivity. I was told I must find out why and post it immediately, and as usual, the ever-amenable individual that I am, am now posting an article about why you may get tooth pain while running.

There are several reasons you could be experiencing tooth or gum pain while running or exercising. Those several reasons come from two basic reasons, however. Generally speaking, either infection in the teeth or gums, or trauma to the teeth or jaw are the culprits. Temperature can also play a role in it.

More specifically…

Infection, when speaking of the mouth, is more than just having a golf-ball-sized abscess in your jaw bone. Cavities can be considered a type of infection as well. In fact, cavities are formed by bacteria, and when that bacteria eats through the outer layer of your tooth (the enamel), and through the second layer (dentin), and hits the dental pulp (that part of your tooth containing the nerves and blood vessels that supply your tooth with minerals)…you will see for yourself that yes, yes that is an infection. The bacteria can cause the nerve to become inflamed, they create the abscess on the base of the root of the tooth after eating through all of those layers, and are generally pretty destructive. It’s quite possible that because of those little bugs (I’m talking about the bacteria here) you may feel sensitivity or pain in your teeth. And it’s not just the teeth those bacteria affect. They also affect your gums, which is essentially what gingivitis is: an infection of your gums. Bacteria can cause inflammation in the root of the tooth itself, as well as in the gums. Inflammation causes sensitivity and pain. When you run you are also increasing blood flow in the body, this can contribute to the inflammation that could possibly exist in the tooth or gums, which, as a result, can exacerbate the problem and contribute to you experiencing pain while running.

Experiencing tooth pain while running doesn’t only come from an infection, however. A lot of times when an individual is exerting themselves in some way, there is a tendency to grit ones teeth. That’s pretty normal actually. So, quite possibly, part of the tooth pain while running can be that you are gritting your teeth unconsciously.  Gritting your teeth hard can cause pain in your teeth, jaw joints, jaw bone itself, as well as along the gums…and could be made even worse if there was an infection anywhere in or around the outside of your teeth. It is quite possible as well that you may hold your teeth slightly apart while running, making it possible for the teeth to come down forcefully together with each impact of your feet hitting the ground. This can most certainly cause tooth pain while running — well, tooth AND gum pain. Extremes of hot and cold in the weather can also contribute to the sensitivity and pain you feel when running or exercising. Especially if you have an existing infection.

As mentioned earlier, several factors can be in play that help contribute to experiencing tooth and gum pain after or during physical exertion, e.g. running.

What do you do about it?

Well, I would be remiss not to mention that if pain is being experienced in and around the teeth and gums, you should go to your dentist in order to at least rule out an infection. If it is an infection, the dentist can spot it and do something about it, or at least send you to someone who can do something about it. He’ll be able to determine if it’s an abscess, cavities, infected roots or if you have gingivitis etc. and work with you to remove the infection and get your teeth and gums into a healthy state. If it’s trauma of the teeth at fault, the dentist can also help work out a solution to that as well. You won’t really be able to spot the source of the tooth or gum pain very well without seeing your dentist. So, I implore, please, go see your dentist. Help yourself to help us help get rid of that tooth pain while running. So much help!

Here’s another article on the subject.

Stay healthy my (running) friends!



12 Responses

  1. Thank you so much. I am in a school where we have to run a mile everyday in gym and finish it under 12 minutes. After I run, my teeth hurt, and this explains why it hurts very well. Thanks again!

  2. Hi
    Thank you for the article
    I have the same problem, but for me it is specifically the lower anterior “inter-tooth spaces” and the “neck” region. I get no associated yaw pain. My intuition always was that it might be associated with metabolic acidosis or just the high volumes of air moving threw, leading to temperature or dryness irritation.
    Does anyone have similar symptoms?
    Is it worse in winter?
    Would you get it if you focus on nose breathing?

    I like to really push my self, that’s why I think that lactic acid might play a role
    (Teeth and bone deposition need alkaline environment right?)

    1. Hi there Chris!

      We have seen similar symptoms as you are describing, and yes, it does often get worse in winter. Nose breathing may help if the irritation, sensitivity, or pain is coming from temperature change. If there is decay present, dryness of the teeth could exacerbate and expedite that (bacteria love dry teeth). Also, gum disease and following bone loss occurs where you are talking about (interproximally), so going to the dentist could help either discover, or rule this out. They’ll be able to determine if this is the case. I haven’t heard much in the form of lactic acid playing a role though.

      Hope this helps!

  3. I have tooth pain after exercising. Have gone to dentist and had X-rays . No disease found. I don’t clench. The exercise I am talking about is walking.

    1. Hey there, Beverly!

      When you went to the dentist, did they notice any wear on the chewing surfaces of the teeth? I ask this because, often times those who clench and grind their teeth at night may not even know they are doing it, and a dental appliance worn at night called a “bite guard”, could help calm the nerves down if they are being irritated from excessive night-time force.

      Thanks for checking in!

  4. @Christopher I have the exact symptoms. The pain is in the lower jaw, kind of under the teeth. I just hope it isn’t something bad. I usually feel this pain after running hard specially if it’s cold, then my jaw feels so painful and my mouth starts to water for a very long time while it hurts. I will go to the dentist to ask more about it, but im afraid that it isn’t something so simple, cause my teeth are very healthy. I never had any major problems other than one or two caries when I was a kid.

  5. I only get pain in the front 4 teeth on the bottom and in my ears. I also taste iron or a weird bloody taste in my mouth but no blood. I do really push myself and I have pretty good shoes for abosribing shock. I have also been to a dentist and there is no infection but my bottom teeth are pretty cramped. It is possible that this could be the problem?

    1. Hey Abby!

      The source of the pain could be either infection or force. Do you clench your teeth when you exercise? If you do, then try to keep your jaw relaxed and see if that changes anything.

      Feel free to come in and see the dentist for a complimentary consult!

    1. Hi there Julian!

      Yes you can continue to exercise. However, you should consult a dentist, have x-rays taken, and make sure there is no dental infection or to check to see if the discomfort is coming from clenching or grinding while jogging.

      Thanks for the question!

  6. Thanks for this 🙂
    I have started getting the worst tooth pain after running and it is coming from a tooth I recently had root canal on a month ago. Back to the dentist I go. Sad to miss out on a few runs until it gets sorted.

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