Common Causes of Tooth Pain and How to Treat Them
Perhaps one of the most stereotypical problems that can land you at the dentist is the classic toothache. In old movies, a toothache usually meant spending some time with some ice before venturing to the dentist to have the tooth pulled. Today, however, a lot more is known about the causes of tooth pain, and how to treat those problems.
Causes of Tooth Pain
There are many conditions that cause tooth pain. One of the most common is tooth decay, or the more extreme example of an abscessed tooth. A tooth fracture or damaged filling will cause pain as well. Sometimes, grinding the teeth at night or chewing gum can cause chronic pain due to irritation of the nerves in the teeth. Tooth pain can be constant, intermittent, sharp, or throbbing. Sometimes, the pain is brought on by pressure on the tooth, or is especially bad when hot or cold food is being eaten.
When to see the Dentist
Most toothaches are minor, but if the pain lasts for more than one or two days or is very severe, schedule an appointment right away. If you have a fever or earache, or if the pain worsens when opening your mouth wide, get to a dentist as soon as possible, as these could be signs of an infection.
How Tooth Pain is Treated
Tooth pain can be treated in many different ways, depending on what is causing it. The dentist will most likely ask you questions about when the pain started and what brings it on, and they may take X-rays to determine the source of the problem. If a cavity is found, the dentist will fill it, hopefully relieving the pain. In severe cases, the tooth may need to be extracted. When the tooth’s nerve is infected, a root canal is in order – this procedure removes the nerve from the tooth, eliminating any pain. The procedure might be paired with antibiotics if there is a lingering infection. If the cause of the pain is determined to be from grinding, a night guard may be fitted to relieve the symptoms.
The easiest way to prevent tooth pain is to follow good oral hygiene practices. This will help you avoid cavities and infections, which are the primary causes of tooth pain. Be sure to brush your teeth twice a day and floss every day. Schedule regular appointments with your dentist to catch any problems before they become serious. Your dentist can also talk to you about preventative measures such as fluoride applications and sealants to prevent cavities and tooth decay. Contact the experts at California Dental Group if you have any tooth pain, or would like to know more about preventative measures.