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Have you ever wondered when to call your medical doctor or when to call your dentist? Tic Douloureax, also known as Trigeminal Neuralgia is sharp pain to the face, typically on one side, that can be triggered by brushing teeth, applying makeup, eating, drinking, encountering a breeze, or other actions that involve movement, contact, or touch to the face. The pain can last anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes and can range from mild to severe. Trigeminal Neuralgia is caused by disruption to the trigeminal nerve’s function which can result in pain to the cheek, jaw, teeth, gums, and less frequently the eye or forehead. Sometimes there are underlying conditions involved, such as multiple sclerosis or tumor growth. The condition typically effects people age 50 and over, and is rare in those under 30 years of age.

Because Trigeminal Neuralgia can cause pain in the teeth and gums, you may find yourself in a dental chair. Anytime your teeth or gums hurt, you should be evaluated by a dentist. In this case, your dentist will begin ruling out potential causes of your pain, and if the pain is suspected to be trigeminal neuralgia, you will be referred to your medical provider for diagnosis and treatment. When in doubt, call your health care providers for help and advice. We are here to answer your questions and partner with you in your care. For further reading on Trigeminal Neuralgia, we recommend reading the articles found in the references below.

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Wendel Family Dental Centre

**References for all content**

Disease and Conditions: “Trigeminal Neuralgia”. (2012). Retrieved October 28, 2014, from:

Lubin, Edward, MD, PhD. Emedicinehealth. “Trigeminal Neuralgia (Facial Nerve Pain)”. Retrieved October 28, 2014 from: