So many people seem to ask, “Why Do My Bottom Teeth Hurt When I Exercise?”
Sure, you expect some soreness in your muscles, especially the ones that you’re training, but your teeth?
As it turns out, this is a “thing” and many people have experienced tooth soreness when they workout.
And for many of you it seems to emanate from the bottom teeth.
This probably seems fairly strange, so I’ll explain why this is happening.
Why Do My Bottom Teeth Hurt When I Exercise?
There are various reasons why your bottom teeth hurt when you exercise. Firstly, exercise will increase blood flow throughout the body, and this includes your teeth. This pain can be exasperated if you have a gum or tooth infection. Then again, the pain can be caused by clenching your jaw or pushing your bottom teeth with your tongue. If you have sinus issues your teeth may hurt, as well as your head, eyes, and your ears. Plus, environmental changes, especially temperature, could be the root of your sore teeth.
1. Increased Blood Flow
Any form of exercise, whether cardio or resistance-based will get the heart pumping.
This in turn increases blood flow throughout the body and will typically raise your blood pressure as well.
And when I say, “throughout the body”, I mean everywhere, and the teeth are no exception.
Well, in truth, the gums more specifically.
Blood will generally flow to the muscles that are being worked the hardest during exercise.
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This is actually to help transport oxygen to your working muscles.
And the body will take blood from wherever it can, e.g. kidneys, liver, stomach, mouth, etc.
It’s usually once you stop exercising (or relax) that your blood circulation tries to return to normal, and this is when you typically experience tooth pain.
Basically, blood is trying to flow back into the gum area.
This pain can actually feel a lot worse if you have cavities, or a gum or tooth infection.
2. Clenching or Placing Pressure on Your Teeth
I guess a fairly obvious reason that your teeth hurt is that you’re clenching your jaw while you exercise.
In fact, a high percentage of us do this without ever actually realising it.
Then again, it’s not unheard-of to push against your bottom teeth with your tongue.
This typically happens when you’re in the middle of an intense form of exercise.
Perhaps, you’re struggling to push out your last rep of a bench press.
Maybe, you’re absolutely shot, as you try for just one more pull up.
Then again, you may even find yourself clenching while you’re running and your energy levels are running low.
I know many people typically lift while wearing a gumshield.
Now, although this is a good way to stop clenching your teeth and jaw, it does take some getting used to.
However, if you’re in constant tooth pain whenever you exercise, you’ve got nothing to lose by giving a gumshield a try.
3. You Have Sinus Problems
I’ve already mentioned things like cavities, gum or tooth infections.
All of these things can be further agitated by sinus problems.
This could range from congestion or inflammation in the sinuses.
In fact, not only will this make your teeth hurt during or after exercise, it’s likely to stretch to your eyes, ears, and head.
You’ll probably experience a throbbing pain throughout these areas of your face.
You have to remember that the sinuses are located just above the teeth, so this could explain the pain.
Additionally, your bottom teeth are more likely to hurt through sinusitis during extremely intense resistance exercise or cardio.
In fact, many runners complain of their teeth hurting whenever they run, and your breathing can certainly have an impact (more on this in a moment).
Is it Toothache or Sinusitis?
4. Changes in Temperature
I’ve just spoken about running, and this is often one of the most common times that you’ll experience tooth pain.
One of the main reasons for this is due to a change in temperature.
Although, this is more noticeable in cold weather conditions.
With that being said, you may also notice a throbbing in your bottom teeth even when it’s hot.
You should pay particular attention to the outside temperature whenever your teeth do hurt.
This can provide a clue as to why this is happening.
If you have sensitive teeth then a cold blast of wind while running could certainly cause some discomfort.
Plus, once again, this change in temperature can cause you pain if you have cavities, as well as gum or tooth infections.
Perhaps you even have receding gums which means that the roots of your teeth are exposed to the cold conditions.
You could even lack tooth enamel, which will not provide any insulation against the cold weather.
So, it could just be a case of having to run without your mouth wide open.
However, just as with wearing a gumshield, this will also take some getting used to.
5. Heavy Breathing Can Affect Your Teeth
Your breathing could be causing you tooth pain during exercise.
In truth, this is much the same as the changes in temperature that I’ve just mentioned.
Whenever you perform intense exercise your breathing will automatically increase.
And this will once more cause fluctuating temperatures in your mouth, and around your teeth.
Suffice to say, if you have sensitive teeth, or any other teeth and mouth conditions, you are likely to experience discomfort.
Unfortunately, there’s not a great deal you can do about this.
The harder you exercise, the more your breathing will increase.
But, if you do notice that your teeth hurt during heavy breathing this is likely to mean that you have some issues with your teeth.
Then there’s only one thing for it.
6. Go and See a Dentist
I guess it’s the one thing you were hoping to avoid.
However, you may be left with no other option if you find the pain unbearable.
But, if your teeth really hurt that much during exercise then it’s advisable to make an appointment with a dentist.
Okay, there are various reasons, such as blood flow and clenching, that don’t point to an issue with your teeth.
That being said, by-and-large the pain you’re experiencing points to something being wrong with your teeth.
Firstly, there are the usual suspects, which include cavities, infections, sensitive teeth, or even periodontal disease.
All of these things can be diagnosed and treated by a dentist.
Then again, being a smoker, having a weak immune system, or poor dental hygiene could all be the cause of your tooth pain.
Plus, some of these issues could point to more serious health conditions.
So, no matter how much a visit to the dentist scares you, it is definitely something you should consider if this has been an on-going problem.
So, hopefully you understand there could be any number of reasons why your bottom teeth hurt when you exercise.
Firstly, exercise will increase blood flow throughout the body and raise your blood pressure.
And this can also affect the gums.
Then again, you may be inadvertently clenching your jaw or pushing your bottom teeth with your tongue while you exercise.
Perhaps, you have a sensitivity to a change in temperature, especially when it’s cold.
You can also cause temperature changes in your mouth through heavy breathing.
However, if the pain persists this could point to any number of mouth or teeth conditions, so you would be better off making an appointment with a dentist.
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Hi, I’m Partha, the founder of My Bodyweight Exercises. I’m someone who’s been passionate about exercise and nutrition for more years than I care to remember. I’ve studied, researched, and honed my skills for a number of decades now. So, I’ve created this website to hopefully share my knowledge with you. Whether your goal is to lose weight, burn fat, get fitter, or build muscle and strength, I’ve got you covered.