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Why Does My Tooth Hurt? 5 Possible Answers

If you are experiencing tooth or gum pain, it is highly recommended that you promptly reach out to your dentist to schedule an appointment. Our dentists in Orleans have listed some potential causes of the pain and provided helpful tips on what you can do while waiting to see your dentist.

What causes tooth pain & gum pain?

No matter how mild or intense the toothache is, it's crucial to consult a dentist for a diagnosis promptly. Maintaining a thorough oral hygiene routine can usually help prevent toothaches and discomfort. However, various factors can contribute to tooth or gum pain, such as the ones listed below.

Cavity/Tooth Decay

Cavities may develop slowly, but the pain can arise suddenly. It is crucial to promptly address this issue to avoid the possibility of an infection taking hold.

Grinding, Trauma or Injury

If you are experiencing tooth damage caused by grinding your teeth in your sleep or through an injury sustained while playing sports, it is important not to ignore the pain.

Your dentist may suggest treatment options such as fillings, crowns, or bonding to address the issue. Additionally, tooth sensitivity may also arise from grinding and it is recommended to ask your dentist for advice on how to break this harmful habit.

Wisdom Teeth

When wisdom teeth are impacted, they can cause significant pain by exerting pressure on nearby teeth or causing infection. Additionally, impacted wisdom teeth may result in tooth damage and overcrowding if there is insufficient space for them to grow correctly.

Abscessed Tooth

Bacterial infections may lead to pockets filled with pus. This not only creates painful sensitivity, but can also develop into a more serious, or even life-threatening, condition.

Gum Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, has different stages. It starts with gingivitis, which is the early stage, and can progress to moderate or severe levels. In the beginning, your dentist may address gingivitis by performing a procedure called scaling and root planing. This involves removing plaque buildup from the gum line.

In more urgent situations where gum disease has advanced to a severe stage, treatment may involve a root canal, antibiotics, and/or surgery.

Other Potential Causes

It's important to keep in mind that some individuals may experience temporary sensitivity in their teeth, which may not necessarily indicate a severe issue. To alleviate this discomfort, using toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth might help. It's also advisable to avoid consuming extremely hot or cold foods and beverages until the sensitivity subsides. 

If your tooth sensitivity persists for more than a few days, it may be a sign of a more serious issue such as gum recession. It's best to schedule an appointment with your dentist to address the problem. Keep in mind that there are also other possible causes of tooth pain that may not be related to your oral health. For instance, viral or sinus infections, vitamin deficiencies, headaches, or colds can produce symptoms similar to those of a toothache.

However, consulting with your dentist is crucial since failing to diagnose or ignoring the pain yourself could lead to significant complications. Most dental pain won't subside on its own and should be evaluated by a dental professional.

What Helps Tooth Pain?

If you are wondering how to relieve tooth pain, the first and most obvious answer is to make an appointment with your dentist so that the issue can be diagnosed and treated.

In the meantime, you can try a few home remedies to alleviate tooth pain. Applying an ice pack or taking an over-the-counter pain medication can help reduce pain and inflammation. Additionally, a saltwater rinse may also provide comfort and alleviate tooth pain in some cases.

Are you suffering from toothaches or gum pain? Reach out to our dentists in Orleans to schedule an appointment today.

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