MY TEETH HURT! COMMON CAUSES OF TOOTH PAIN
If you have ever had a throbbing toothache, it's hard to forget. Many people feel that toothaches are one of the worst pains felt in the body, particularly when it is unexpected. There are times that it is not clear what's causing your discomfort, making it even more stressful. A toothache is often as straightforward as a tiny cavity or sinus pressure; however, you won't know until you schedule an exam at your dentist. At DentalWorks in Wake Forest, NC, we will get you in for a consultation as soon as you can come in to diagnose the source of your pain and take action immediately. From abscesses to wisdom teeth, these are a few of the most frequent causes of toothaches:
AN ABSCESSED TOOTH
An abscessed tooth can lead to a large amount of pain. An abscess means you have an infection inside the tooth's root. You'll have visible inflammation and swelling and, obviously, lots of pain, which could make it difficult to use the side of your mouth with the abscess. Plus, when you've got a fever, the disease has spread to your jaw and might become an infection in your entire body. To treat the pain, your dentist will have to remove the infection and also prescribe antibiotics.
Sneaky cavities are the number one suspect in regards to toothaches. While you might think of a cavity as a small problem, they could become bigger issue, such as an abscessed tooth, if left untreated. If found early, a cavity is easily cleaned out by your dentist and sealed with a tooth-colored filling.
CLENCHING YOUR JAW
Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge that allows your jaw to open and close. If you clench your jaw, whether you do it as a reaction to anxiety throughout the day or while you sleep, it can result in TMD (temporomandibular joint disorder). This can change your bite alignment leaving you with tooth pain, headaches, and other symptoms. DentalWorks in Wake Forest, NC provides many therapies for TMJ disorder, for example, night guards. As soon as your TMD is identified, your dentist will create a custom TMJ treatment plan.
GRINDING YOUR TEETH
People have different responses to daily stress. If you're grinding your teeth during the day, then you will eventually notice toothaches. You may also have nocturnal or nighttime bruxism, meaning that you're grinding your teeth while you sleep. Chronic grinding hurts your oral health, resulting in weakened enamel, pain, and dental cracks. After assessing your teeth grinding, your dentist will create a treatment plan to protect your teeth from grinding then restore the health of your mouth.
A FILLING IS LOOSE
Many people have old silver fillings that do not adhere very well to teeth compared to contemporary composite resin fillings. A loose restoration can really cause problems quickly. Debris and germs creep into the cracks under your filling creating inflammation, decay, and infection. Remember that you don't necessarily need to see or feel that a filling is loose. The motion of your restoration may be very small. You might not realize you've got an issue before your dentist sees it on a digital x-ray. In case you have metal fillings, speak with your dentist about replacing them before you've got a problem.
TEETH STRAIGHTENING TREATMENTS
When you are straightening your teeth using traditional metal braces or transparent aligners, then you will probably feel some pain in your teeth. When braces are tightened or adjusted, there is usually a day or two when your gums and teeth are likely to be somewhat achy after the visits. Switching to the next pair of aligners also will cause tooth pain for a while as your teeth and gums acclimate. We recommend that you speak with your orthodontist or dentist about ways to decrease distress with non-prescription pain medication and other home remedies. Intense or lasting pain need to be reported right away because it could be a sign of a serious issue.
SEASONAL ALLERGIES AND SINUS INFECTIONS
If you suffer from allergies or chronic sinus infections, you understand the distress of sinus headaches from pressure. Your teeth (especially you top molars) are extremely near your sinus cavities so you might feel toothaches when you have sinusitis (an infection in your sinuses). You'll have to visit your primary care doctor to treat sinusitis. Once you have your sinus situation managed, your dental and facial pain should ease up for much-needed relief.
Over-the-counter teeth whitening strips and other products can cause sensitivity. Over-bleaching and getting products into a cracked tooth may be reasons your teeth hurt. Rather than risk toothaches, sensitivity, and also bad outcomes, schedule an appointment to learn about professional whitening. Our office in Wake Forest, NC provides both in-office and home teeth whitening personalized to your needs and goals.
Every once in a while that you might feel a place in your mouth that is particularly tormented if you sip a hot beverage or eat something ice cold. Tooth sensitivity to cold, hot, or sweet may indicate a bigger dental issue, like an exposed nerve or cavity. You need to make a consultation at the dentist if the sensitivity is severe or lasts a long time so that the problem can be diagnosed then treated.
Hopefully, you won't ever experience this, but if you're in an auto crash or suffer an accident while playing sports, the trauma to your teeth may cause a crack, chip, fracture, or a complete knock out of your teeth. It's a good idea to get your teeth checked out afterward if you experience a trauma to your face or teeth. To prevent dental injuries during sports, Dental Works in Wake Forest, NC makes custom mouth guard specially designed for athletes.
The third molars, commonly known as the wisdom teeth, usually come in once your other teeth have already filled up your smile. When the new molars begin to come in (commonly around the late teens and early 20s), you probably do not have space in your smile. That is the reason these teeth are often extracted. Before they are, wisdom teeth may wreak havoc. You might notice something as small as an overall ache to a serious pain that won't go away. Your lower face may be inflamed and feel tender during the eruption process. With advanced extraction methods and sedation, extracting wisdom teeth is a simple procedure, which keeps you from a lot more trouble. Waiting too long to get your wisdom teeth removed increases your risk of nerve damage, cysts, along with a much more invasive extraction procedure.
DON'T FORGET IT, FIX IT
As soon as you are feeling even a little pain, you need to schedule an appointment at your dentist to get the issue identified and treated. If you are ignoring the pain due to dental worries or anxiety about the possibility of a lengthy process, ask about your sedation choices. DentalWorks in Wake Forest, NC utilizes innovative equipment and methods to keep patients comfortable during procedures; however, we also offer several different types of sedation to accommodate your needs. And remember that many issues won't heal naturally, so if you wait to seek treatment, the the issue will probably get worse, which might mean a longer treatment process. If you want to avoid spending extra money and time in your dentist's chair, schedule appointment twice a year at DentalWorks in Wake Forest, NC to get a professional cleaning also an examination. This gives your dental team the chance to offer proactive treatments such as fluoride treatments, sealants, and much more that will reduce your chance of developing tooth pain. Like Benjamin Franklin said, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."