Ear pain can have many causes including a brain tumor and sinus cancer.
But what about wisdom teeth growing in the wrong way?
“Growth of wisdom teeth often causes pain on the affected side of the face including the ear,” says Brijesh Chandwani, DMD, BDS, Diplomate, American Board of Orofacial Pain, with Connecticut & NY TMJ.
Ear Pain Being the ONLY Symptom of Wisdom Teeth?
Dr. Chandwani says, “The pain is rarely only in the ear though. The pain is exhibited along the course of the trigeminal nerve or along the fascial spaces surrounding different structures around the wisdom tooth.
“The trigeminal nerve supplies different parts of the face and jaw region including some parts of the ear.
“Infection in the wisdom tooth can spread to the neck and ear region and cause severe ear and face pain; there is generally swelling of the face and neck in such cases.”
Ear Pain from Sinus Cancer
Cancers of the sinus and surrounding areas are also known as paranasal tumors. A paranasal tumor can also be benign.
Ear pain is not a common symptom of sinus or nasal tumors. More common symptoms are nasal discharge, bleeding from the nose, a blocked feeling in the nose, reduced sense of smell, a palpable lump along the side of the nose, and excessive tearing of one eye.
If your only symptom is ear pain, it’s likely an ear infection. Don’t wait around guessing; see a doctor.
If the ear pain is being caused by your wisdom teeth, this can be easily determined by a dentist once an E.N.T. doctor rules out other causes.
Ear Pain from a Brain Tumor
The type of brain tumor is called acoustic neuroma. It is far more likely to cause tinnitus (one ear only) and/or hearing loss in the ringing ear.
Other reported symptoms are dizziness and headaches, but the tinnitus and/or hearing loss are by far in the top two positions.
“Ear pain (otalgia) is very rare from an acoustic neuroma,” says Ted McRackan, MD, MSCR, Director, Skull Base Center; Assistant Professor, Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina.
“I always evaluate all other possible causes of ear pain in patients with acoustic neuroma and typically find another cause. The most common cause is TMJ arthralgia.”
Though it begins in the ear canal, this benign growth is considered a brain tumor.
Wisdom Teeth Extraction
If you’ve been diagnosed with impacted wisdom teeth or partially erupted wisdom teeth … they absolutely need to be removed. Leaving them in can result in repeated infections, gum and bone damage, plus pain when chewing.