It may seem strange, but visiting the dentist is something you might want to consider doing before you head out on your next business trip or family vacation. This is because if you already have a toothache or dental sensitivity, the pressure changes on an airplane can cause this pain to intensify and worsen.
The reason for this increased pain is based on simple physics. Our bones, organs, and muscles have equalized at our normal atmospheric pressure. When we experience atmospheric extremes (such as when flying on an airplane or diving deep into the ocean), our bodies aren’t able to equalize the pressure. This can cause discomfort and pain.
Atmospheric changes are most likely to affect the sinus cavities. The sinuses are closely connected to the upper back teeth, and they even share the same nerves. Because they’re so closely connected, pain from the sinuses due to atmospheric pressure may radiate to the teeth. This is known as referred pain.
During these atmospheric changes, the sinus cavity with swell and put pressure on the jaw. This will cause any existing jaw problems or dental pain to intensify. If the pressure is great enough, the pain can become unbearable, causing your plane trip to be miserable.
Before heading out on your next vacation, we recommend dealing with any dental problems beforehand. This will allow you to have a comfortable, pain-free trip.