Facial pain

Module created April 2017

The causes of oro-facial pain are many and varied. The most common cause of oro-facial pain is odontogenic in origin. This guide is designed to help General Practitioners identify and correctly signpost people who may contact their practices with common oro-facial pain. It is not an exhaustive list and does not contain advice on managing patients who, for instance, may have angina presenting as pain in the mandible or who have severe but uncommon conditions such as trigeminal neuralgia.

Introduction to Facial Pain

There is little that General Medical Practitioners can do to manage the vast majority of dental problems but there will be rare occasions where prompt action by General Medical Practitioners will be needed.

To understand the causes and management of oro-facial pain it is important to revisit the structure of teeth; the structure and relationship of the surrounding tissues and some brief oral neurophysiology.

This module was written by Mick Allen Dental Practice Advisor (Operations and Strategy), Cardiff and Vale University Health Board.


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