On February 16th, 2012, posted in: Blog
One of the most common dental problems, the toothache, has a wide variety of causes and treatments. Tooth, gum, and jaw pain can be easily confused with one another, and without the help of a professional dentist they can be almost impossible to diagnose. However, in a lot of cases where a tooth is damaged or sensitive to liquids it may be a sign of one of the following ailments:
- Cavities and tooth decay: Cavities–caused by acids, sugars, and bacteria penetrating the enamel–will eventually reach past the enamel, causing either direct sensitivity of the nerve, or microcavities in the teeth that are sensitive to heat, cold, and different types of pressure.
- New teeth coming in: When adult teeth or wisdom teeth are erupting through the gums, the inflammation associated with it can make teeth sore.
- Fractured tooth: Accidentally biting anything harder than the tooth can create an internal or external crack or fracture in a tooth. Sometimes a broken tooth may be extremely painful, other times it may not cause any pain at all. Depending on how the tooth is damaged, it will be more or less sensitive.
- Losing a filling: Fillings may fall out or be knocked out, resulting in a previously filled and cleaned cavity being opened. Because this part of the tooth may be hard to clean, it generally will degrade faster than the rest of teeth due to buildup of food or acids.
- Gum infections: If there’s inflammation, swelling, or other signs of infection, pain in the gums can sometimes feel like pain in the tooth. Infections are important to treat soon because they can quickly damage the mouth or spread beyond it.
Brushing regularly (with a fluoride-containing paste), flossing, and using a mouthwash are generally good ways to avoid degradation of the teeth and complications leading to tooth damage. Healthy gums are also crucial to maintaining proper overall oral health, and preventing toothaches. There are many other causes of a toothache, and many will vary with regard to sensitivity to temperature, sensitivity to sweets, and pain when applying pressure.
If you have a toothache that lasts for more than a few days, or is painful, call the office of Dr. Angela E. Mulrooney, DMD at 403-272-0616
Dr. Angela E. Mulrooney
2710 17 Avenue Southeast
Calgary, AB T2A 0P6