7 Major Causes Of Facial Pain With Symptoms And Treatment Options



Published on: 06-Feb-2024


10 min read




Lalita Vishwakarma


7 Major Causes Of Facial Pain With Symptoms And Treatment Options

7 Major Causes Of Facial Pain With Symptoms And Treatment Options

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Hello readers! Have you ever experienced pain on the left or right side of your face, including the jaw area? Well, it can be quite uncomfortable and even debilitating at times. In fact, facial pain and headaches are common health issues that many people face, but when they occur on the specific side of the face and jaw, it can be a sign of an underlying condition that requires attention. Facial pain has many possible causes, including injury, infection, and nerve damage. 

These symptoms can affect anyone, irrespective of age and gender, so it's important to understand the major causes, symptoms, and potential treatments associated with this condition. Here, in this blog, we will explore the factors that can lead to facial pain and provide some helpful information and tips to manage and alleviate these symptoms. 

Table of Contents

  1. What Is Facial Pain?

  2. What Causes Pain On The Cheekbone?

  3. What Are The Symptoms Of Facial Pain?

  4. How To Relieve Face Pain?

  5. The Final Say

  6. FAQs

  7. References

What Is Facial Pain?

Facial pain refers to the burning or achy feeling in any part of your face, mouth, or eyes. You may feel facial pain near the ear or pain in the cheek and eye socket. Not only this, you can also experience pain on the left side of your face and jaw. Various things, such as headaches, injuries, nerve conditions, dental problems, and infections can cause it. There are treatments available that can help you get relief from facial pain and headaches. 

Types Of Facial Pain

To make things easier, doctors usually categorise facial pain into four types 

  • Dental pain related to teeth and gums, 

  • Nerve pain linked to facial nerves, 

  • Temporomandibular pain related to the jaw joint and muscles

  • Vascular pain caused by blood vessel issues. 

Also Read: 7 Benefits Of Regular Activity & Exercises For Beginners

What Causes Pain On The Cheekbone?

The most observed facial pain causes include the following:

1. Headache

These are the foremost and the most common cause of facial pain. There are many types of headaches, several of which, like migraines, can also cause facial pain. They can be treated by following a healthy lifestyle and taking proper medication. Let us understand the types of headaches:


Ice Pick Headache

Cluster Headache

Migraine Headache

Pain description

Sharp, stabbing

Burning, deep

Throbbing, pulsating

Pain duration

3 seconds

15 minutes - 3 hours

4-72 hours (untreated)


Temples, eye sockets, sides

Around eyes and temples

One side of the head, often around the eye

Additional symptoms


Runny nose, red/swollen eyes, restlessness

Nausea, vomiting, light/sound sensitivity, aura (tingling, numbness)


Individual attacks, unpredictable

Clusters over weeks/months, followed by remission

Occasional to frequent attacks


Stress, bright light, sudden movements

Unknown, possibly alcohol, tobacco, lack of sleep

Stress, hormonal changes, certain foods, lack of sleep

Also Read: Natural Relief For Headaches And Migraines With Herbal Teas 

2. Injuries

Facial pain is often caused by injuries that damage the facial nerves. Injuries such as cuts, blows from falls, impacts, violence, and accidents can lead to facial nerve damage. Even cosmetic surgery to the face can cause nerve damage that results in facial pain. Some symptoms of facial nerve injuries include tingling, numbness, and paralysis around the affected area.

Also Read: How To Make Health And Fitness A Lifestyle?

3. TMJ Disorders

The TMJ or temporomandibular joint, located on both sides of the head, is where the jawbone connects to the skull. TMJ disorders refer to conditions that cause pain and movement difficulties in the jaw joint and muscles. Symptoms of a TMJ disorder can include:



Jaw pain

Pain in the jaw joint that may spread to the face, head, or neck

Stiff jaw muscles

Difficulty moving the jaw due to tightness in the muscles

Difficulty opening/closing mouth

Limited jaw movement, sometimes leading to jaw-locking

Clicking, popping, or grinding noises

Sounds in the jaw joint when moving it

Tenderness at the joint

Painful jaw even when not moving

Worsened pain while chewing

Increased discomfort during jaw movement involved in chewing

4. Trigeminal Neuralgia

It is a long-term pain condition affecting the facial trigeminal nerve. This nerve has three branches that provide sensations to various parts of the face. The pain is usually felt on one side of the face and can range from a constant ache to a sudden, stabbing pain. Certain actions like eating, brushing teeth, and even exposure to wind can trigger pain episodes that can last for days or weeks. Over time, the pain can become more frequent and intense.



Compression or pressure on the trigeminal nerve

This is the most common cause, often due to a blood vessel pressing on the nerve near the brainstem.

Nerve damage

Damage from injuries, stroke, or facial surgery can also trigger trigeminal neuralgia.

Underlying medical conditions

Multiple sclerosis and other conditions that affect the myelin sheath around the nerve can contribute to the pain.


Avoiding triggers

Identifying and avoiding triggers like certain foods, touching the face, or temperature changes can help reduce pain attacks.


Anticonvulsants, antidepressants, and botulinum toxin injections can help control pain by reducing nerve activity.


In severe cases, surgery like microvascular decompression can be used to relieve pressure on the nerve.

5. Sinusitis

It is an infection in the small hollow areas near your cheekbones. Sinusitis occurs when the tissue lining your sinuses becomes swollen and inflamed. The sinuses, normally filled with air, can get blocked and filled with fluid due to bacterial or viral infections or allergies. So, it's always a good idea to consult your doctor if you're experiencing any of these symptoms.

6. Deviated Septum

Injury or illness can harm the cartilage that separates your two nasal passages, causing difficulty in breathing through one nostril. This can lead to stuffiness, nosebleeds, snoring, sinus infections, and facial pain. Treatment may not always be necessary, but your doctor may recommend surgery in severe cases.

7. Salivary Gland Infection

It is a medical condition where bacteria infect the glands that produce saliva in your mouth. Symptoms include a painful lump in your cheek or chin, fever, chills, and bad-tasting pus in your mouth. This condition is more common in older people and is treated with antibiotics prescribed by a doctor.

What Are The Symptoms Of Facial Pain?

Some of the facial pain symptoms are:

  • Headache

  • Neck pain

  • Earache

  • Tenderness in the jaw or facial muscles

  • Numbness or tingling in the face.

  • Sensitivity to touch or pressure on the face

  • Difficulty in opening or closing the mouth

  • Limited jaw movement

  • Blurred vision

  • Watery eyes

  • Sensitivity to light

  • Irritability

  • Anxiety or depression related to persistent pain

How To Relieve Face Pain?

There are some home remedies that you can do by yourself to relieve facial pain. These include



Ice pack

Apply for 10-20 minutes several times per day

OTC medication

Ibuprofen, naproxen, or acetaminophen to relieve pain

Head elevation

Promotes mucus and fluid drainage for sinusitis relief

Salt water gargle

Relieve dental pain, gargle three times per day

Complementary therapies

Acupuncture, chiropractic, or biofeedback

You can also try some therapies like acupuncture, chiropractic treatment, and biofeedback beneficial for facial pain.

The Final Say

Unusual facial pain can be a debilitating condition that can negatively impact your daily life. However, there are various ways to relieve facial pain, such as home remedies, complementary therapies, and medical treatments like Botox therapy or nerve blocks. It's essential to identify the root cause of your facial pain to determine the best treatment options available. 

If you are experiencing persistent facial pain, it's crucial to seek medical attention to receive a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. Remember, caring for your overall health and well-being is crucial to living a happy and pain-free life. For more queries on health-related issues, visit ToneOp.


1. Why does my face hurt? 

The possible reasons for facial pain include:

  • Trigeminal Neuralgia

  • Migraine with facial pain

  • Shingles

  • Mouth Cancer

  • Cluster Headache

  • Salivary Gland Infection

  • Abscessed Tooth

2. When is face pain an emergency?

Although facial pain is not an emergency when this pain spreads to the chest and the left arm, it is essential to contact your doctor. This is because it is one of the key signs of a heart attack.

2. How is facial pain diagnosed?

The potential methods to detect facial pain at an early stage are:

  • X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs to check for fractures, tumours, or sinus problems.

  • Blood tests are used to determine conditions like infections or autoimmune diseases.

  • Dental examination to identify potential dental issues as a pain source.

  • Neurological tests to evaluate nerve function and rule out nerve damage.

3. What are the treatment options associated with facial pain?

Some treatment options for facial pain are

  • Botox therapy

  • Injections: Peripheral nerve blocks, Occipital nerve blocks and Sphenopalatine ganglion blocks.

4. Why do you feel a tingling sensation on your face?

You can feel the tingling sensation on your face due to stress, fatigue, previous facial surgeries, exposure to cold air and radiation therapy

6. What are the home remedies to manage facial pain?

You can follow the below-mentioned home remedies to get relief from facial pain:

  • Use an ice pack on the affected area for at least 10-20 minutes. 

  • Ensure to keep changing your sleeping position to avoid facial pain.

  • If the facial pain is due to a dental issue, gargle with warm salt water 3 times to get relief.

  • Do face yoga, meditation and pranayama to get rid of facial pain.

7. What are the symptoms of facial pain?

Some of the possible facial pain symptoms are:

  • Cheek-raising/lid-tightening

  • Upper lip raising

  • Lip-corner pulling

  • Lips parting

  • Mouth opening and eye closure/blinking

8. Does facial pain go away?

Yes, facial pain is not permanent and can be treated with effective treatment or remedy.

9. What causes pain on the cheekbone?

You can feel the pain in your cheekbone if you have:

  • Sinus infection

  • A tooth abscess

  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD)

  • Periodontal disease

  • A nerve condition or other medical condition. 

10. Can a brain tumour cause facial pain?

Well, it might be possible because a tumour in the brain can affect the whole face, resulting in a tingling sensation and severe pain in the facial muscles.

11. Is facial pain serious?

Yes, sometimes the extreme sensation around your face area can lead to irritation, stress, anxiety and more severe migraines.

12. What is trigeminal neuralgia?​

Trigeminal neuralgia, also called tic douloureux, is a condition that causes sudden, intense, and electric shock-like pain in the face. It affects the fifth cranial nerve, which supplies sensation to the forehead, cheek, and lower jaw. This pain can be chronic and recurrent, making it a difficult condition to manage.


  1. Possible causes of facial pain

  2. Facial Pain

  3. Symptoms - Trigeminal neuralgia

About ToneOp

ToneOp is a platform dedicated to improving and maintaining good health through a comprehensive range of goal-oriented health plans with up to 3 Coach support. With a range of Weight Management, Medical Condition, Detox Plans, and Face Yoga Plans, the app also provides premium health trackers, recipes and health content. Get customised diet, fitness, naturopathy & yoga plans and transform yourself with ToneOp. 

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