Although extremely rare, you can get a toothache that has nothing to do with your dental nerves or tooth decay at all. Although this may seem like scary business, it is not really, and is just one of the peculiarities of the human body. Not all parts of your body have nerves, and some pain and inflammation that affects certain parts of your body may show up as pain in another part of your body. This is usually the case with non-dental toothaches, which are also called atypical toothaches as well. Below, we will go over some cases when this kind of pain reaction can occur. It is important to note that this list is not extensive, and poorly working nerves may cause this kind of pain frequently.
The muscles in the mouth
Some of the deep muscles used for masticating, chewing and biting can become painful and inflamed, but when they do, they do not usually signal as pain in the jaw or the muscle itself. Instead, you will feel a sharp sort of jabbing pain in the quadrant that the muscle is in. This is very frequently mistaken for a toothache. This pain is usually not so local, and will show up as a more general sort of pain in the area that the muscle controls.
The soft tissues of your gums and the supporting structures of your teeth frequently have the same nerves as teeth do. When the periodontal ligament- which is a ligament that holds your teeth in place- gets damaged, since it does not have its own set of nerves, will send pain reactions to the nerve of the tooth where it is damaged. This will translate to many people as a toothache. This problem frequently occurs with people who clench teeth often, or who have recently suffered a trauma to the mouth, or whose teeth may be loose and putting pressure on their periodontal ligament. The TMJ (the joint that binds your lower jaw to your upper jaw) can also refer pain to the dental nerve, both directly and indirectly. Very frequently the discs in the joint become displaced or moved, and this can be translated by the body as toothache.
Neuralgia is a condition in which pain signals of unknown origin are sent to the brain. This can happen to any part of the body, including the teeth. In these cases the cause of the neurological disorder is the first thing that must be uncovered, as treatment and a lasting solution to pain can only then begin afterwards.