Tooth pain (or toothache), whether sharp or dull and constant, is often a sign of an underlying dental issue. Multiple conditions (dental and non-dental) could be causing dental pain. This can include conditions such as grinding your teeth or a dental abscess.
Treatment can range from improving your oral health routine to antibiotic care for an infection.
An untreated toothache could spread into your jaw and interfere with regular activities like eating and speaking. Promptly visiting your dentist could help stop its progression before it develops into a more complex dental issue.
To identify the cause of your tooth pain, your dentist will review your medical history and dental health during your consultation. If they suspect an infection or underlying problem, X-rays of your mouth and jaw will be taken to provide a precise diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.
A toothache is often a sign of related dental problems. It usually appears alongside other symptoms, including:
- Jaw and cheek pain and swelling
- Tooth sensitivity to temperature
- Bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- Bad taste in your mouth
Multiple conditions and factors could be causing tooth pain. Some are dental-related issues, and some may be associated with other health problems.
When the tooth pulp, or nerves, become swollen, it may cause discomfort. Dental issues that may cause this type of inflammation include:
Sometimes, tooth pain is a sign of other correlated health issues that may not be dental-related. Tooth pain can be associated with the following conditions:
- Sinus infection
- Vitamin deficiency
- TMJ Disorder (temporomandibular joint)
Visiting your dentist and having a check-up will help promptly identify any issues that could be causing discomfort. If the cause of the toothache is an infection, your dentist may prescribe antibiotics.
Some of the common treatments for dental-related tooth pain include:
Maintaining a dental health routine can help prevent toothaches and other dental-related issues. Some of Dr. Sunitsch's recommendations to achieve this are:
- Brush your teeth twice daily using the proper technique.
- Brush your tongue.
- Floss twice a day.
- Avoid sugary snacks.
- Rinse your mouth after drinking coffee or smoking to prevent staining.
- Use fluoride toothpaste.
- Use custom night guards to help with bruxism (teeth grinding and jaw clenching).
- Apply dental sealants to children’s teeth.