For patients who have been avoiding seeing a general dentist because of fear or apprehension, it may be helpful to know that they are not alone. A 2015 study published in Dental Research Journal found that 58.8% of dental patients surveyed experienced dental anxiety. For patients with severe dental phobia, there are several steps they…
What a Toothache May Mean
You have probably dealt with a toothache more than once in your lifetime. Sometimes, the pain goes away on its own. When that happens, you likely bit down on something too hard or ground your teeth. However, it is more common than not that a toothache indicates that something is wrong. So, even if the pain goes away in a day or two, you should still visit a dental clinic.
The human body is quite incredible. It naturally signals when something is not right. This applies to the mouth as well. For this reason, when someone suffers from a toothache, they need to see a dentist. It does not matter if the level of discomfort is minor or severe.
Deciphering a toothache
The good news is that the list of things that cause a toothache is not overly long. As a result, some people can figure out what is going on. However, there are also some contributing factors involved. With any oral pain, an individual should head to a dental clinic.
Decay, also known as a cavity, is when a tooth’s enamel erodes. If treated early, a dentist can salvage the tooth. Then again, if someone ignores the symptoms, they risk needing the tooth extracted. In that case, a dentist would apply a crown, which encapsulates the tooth to protect it. Tooth decay is often the result of poor oral hygiene, but other things can contribute too.
A bacterial infection often leads to an abscess in the center of the tooth. Depending on the severity of the infection, someone would also experience painful gums. For this, a dentist would remove the abscess and then fill the hole. At the same time, most patients go on antibiotics to get the infection under control.
Bones are not the only thing in the body that fractures. A person can also fracture a tooth. This almost always causes a toothache. A fractured or broken tooth can occur for many reasons.
For instance, poor oral hygiene can weaken teeth. So, just biting down on something hard could cause a tooth to break. Injury is another common cause. That might be the result of falling off a bike or getting hit in the mouth.
Damaged or missing filling
If a filling becomes loose, partially deteriorates, or falls out completely, an individual will develop a toothache. This leaves some or all of the root exposed, which is painful. The dentist will provide the appropriate treatment based on the findings. For a patient with the old type of filling, the dentist would highly recommend changing it.
Millions of people grind their teeth while sleeping. Some even do this while awake. Regardless, the grinding motion wears down the enamel. In more severe cases, this exposes the nerves. The result is a painful toothache.
Types of toothache
Tooth pain is a common event. Some people experience this suddenly. Others develop pain in a gradual way. It can also be challenging to find out the meaning behind each tooth pain. Below are the different types of dental pain and their possible meanings:
This type of pain may be common, but it can be a sign of a serious issue. Fleeting sensitivity may be due to worn enamel. An anti-sensitivity toothpaste can help bring down the pain. Staying away from cold or hot foods for about a week can help determine if the pain will go away. Seeing the dentist may confirm the source of the pain. It could be from gum disease, decay, worn fillings, exposed roots, and fractures.
·Continuous, dull ache
An individual may feel scared because of this type of toothache. This may be due to some food particles stuck between teeth. Something could be stuck in the gum tissue. It could also be due to teeth grinding or a developing tooth abscess. The dentist can determine what the true problem is and provide treatment.
·Severe and throbbing pain
This type of tooth pain is often unbearable. The patient will need to see an emergency dentist for treatment and relief. A strange taste in the mouth, bleeding gums, or discolored gums may accompany this pain.
Jabbing and sharp pain can be due to wear, fracture, or decay. The pain may also come from a dislodged crown or a loose filling.
Avoid suffering from a toothache
Whether minor or severe, the last thing you want is to suffer from a toothache. That means you want to adopt a good daily routine for oral hygiene. Along with brushing, you need to floss after eating. Also, schedule an appointment at a dental clinic every six months. These two things combined will reduce the chance of you having problems.
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