Toothache can be killing, to an extent where you can have major complications. Like tooth loss, bacterial blood infection or inflammation between the lungs. And there are chances that you might be at a risk of pneumonia or brain abscesses. But, this is when, if you leave your toothache untreated.
However, the effects of toothache majorly depend on the type of reason, its realization is the first and foremost step to get away or minimize the risk of developing such health issues. But there are people who either don’t realize whether it is a toothache or just ignore it simply because of carelessness, lack of time, laziness to book an appointment or they don’t know how a mild toothache can result in dire consequences.
How Will You Know You Need To Visit A Dentist?
If your toothache lasts longer than a day or two, and you are experiencing any of these problems then, it is time you should visit the dentist to avoid any further complications:
- Fever and earache
- Swelling around the tooth
- Having trouble opening your mouth wide
- Secretion of foul tasting drainage from the infected tooth
If it is not treated at the right time, there are higher chances of spreading it to other parts of the mouth, face and even skull.
But What Actually Is a Toothache? A Normal Pain Or Something Beyond?
Well, toothache is typically a pain which exists in and surrounding the teeth area including the jaw. It occurs when the innermost layer of the tooth becomes swollen due to tooth decay, or due to a broken tooth or thinning of gums. And, since different people say different things, it becomes difficult to understand the actual root cause of this dental problem.
So, below are the 5 probable causes that are believed to trigger the problem of toothache in an individual:
1. Tooth Decay/Cavity
Source: Financial Tribune
The most common reason behind developing a toothache is tooth decay which happens as a result of bacterial infection. This further leads to formation of cavities or holes in the hard surface of the tooth.
2. Cracked Tooth/Dental Injury
Teeth (even without a cavity) that are weak from within generally break by themselves or get cracked while biting something hard that they can’t withstand. This also results in a severe toothache. In other cases, dental injuries caused by accidents also lead to this problem.
3. Gum Recession
Source: Associates of Dental Arts
This is another common dental problem which causes toothache and if left untreated then it may lead to tooth loss. Gum recession is a condition in which the margin of the gums pulls back exposing most of the tooth leading to gaps between the tooth and gum line, paving the way for infections.
4. Third Molar
Source: New Health Advisor
Wisdom tooth, especially impacted, is one of the causes of toothache. What happens is when a tooth tries to erupt in your mouth, pushing through the gum and finds no space to accommodate, it becomes impacted, giving you a pain. An x-ray can help you in knowing whether a wisdom tooth is erupting.
5. Periapical Abscess
When the tooth decay becomes severe or if any of the above problems remain untreated, pus starts forming at the end of the gums and inside the teeth, resulting in a bacterial infection or a periapical abscess.
Ways to Deal with Toothache
After examining your toothache and identifying its causes, your dentist will be able to advise you on the line of treatment. Typically, painkillers like ibuprofen and paracetamol are given to reduce the pain and discomfort, but that is temporary.
- In case of tooth decay, the rotten area is removed and replaced with a filling.
- If your dentist finds out an infected pulp inside your mouth, you might have to undergo root canal. In this, the infected pulp is removed and a special filling is used to seal that tooth, ensuring the infection does not relapse.
- If a broken or loose filling is troubling you and giving you a toothache, then it will be removed and after cleaning that part, a new filling is inserted.
- In some cases like a wedged tooth where there is no treatment available for the pain, the tooth is removed.
- If experiencing fever or swelling in the jaw, you might be prescribed an antibiotic.
- At times, to ease the pain and inflammation, phototherapy treatment is given with a cold laser.
But, if you really want to escape from the problem of toothache and maintain your dental health, then follow these basics of proper care and implement them in your daily routine:
- Ensure you visit your dentist for regular dental check-ups.
- Cut down on sugary foods and drinks.
- Make a habit of brushing your teeth at least twice daily.
- Use a dental floss and mouthwash to keep your teeth healthy and clean.
Toothache can be mild at the initial stages but gradually, it will turn into a nightmare, leaving you with multiple problems. Doesn’t matter whether you have experienced a situation like this before or have not yet, it is important to know what can be its possible causes and symptoms. This will help you in getting timely treatment before it is too late.
Renu Sharma is an passionate writer and inbound consultant a Dave Grody Dental, Family and Cosmetic Dentistry based in Augusta. She loves to write on health, fitness and fashion.