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Pain in left side of mouth

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Good afternoon! I am a nineteen year old female experiencing pain on the left side of my mouth, up to my ear. It is made worse by excessive talking or eating, and it can go from an irritating dull pain to a sudden sharp pain that forces me to stop what I'm doing to grab my ear/jaw. This has been happening for about three days and is getting neither worse nor better. This morning I woke up with a slight discomfort in my throat, but it is not 'sore'. However, this is not uncommon as I am currently living in a dorm on my college campus where there is always an abundance of cold and flu germs. I am wondering if this could be a symptom of a common cold or virus or if it is attributed to my somewhat recent tongue piercing. I got my tongue pierced in mid-June and felt a similar pain during its healing process but I have had no problems with it after it had healed.
I appreciate any help you can offer. Thank you!

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replied October 14th, 2009
Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders Answer A7525

Welcome to the forum!
The symptoms (pain on the left side of my mouth, up to my ear. It is made worse by excessive talking or eating) appear to be due to TMJ or temporomandibular joint disorder. This involves inflammation of the lower jaw joint. It can be due to arthritis or infection. There is a chance that tongue piercing caused the infection or pull at a nerve. It could also be due to a blocked eustachean tube (tube connecting mouth with ear). With sore throat this is a possibility. Try valsalva maneuver (Done by taking a deep breath and blowing while pinching your nostrils and closing your mouth). This will help clear the secretions in this tube that connects the back of your throat with your ear. Try taking steam twice in a day.
However on net and without examining it is difficult to give a confirmed opinion. Please consult your doctor or an ENT specialist regarding this. Hope this helps. Take care!

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