The Causes of Toothaches and Why You Should See a Dentist Right Away if Your Have OneAug 07 2018

Have a toothache?  Your suffering may be caused by any number of things, some of them life-threatening.  That is why it is important that you not try to diagnose yourself and get in to see your dentist as soon as possible.  Not to mention that you are probably in a great deal of pain.

Infection or Decay

When decay or trauma goes untreated, bacteria can get into the root of your tooth, which contains all the nerve tissue that keeps your tooth alive. When bacteria enter your tooth root, an infection can make the tooth die inside.  In even worse cases, it may even progress to the jaw bone.  The sooner you can get this treated, the better chance you have of saving your tooth.

Sensitive Teeth

Sometimes, your teeth may feel like they’re aching from the inside out.  If that happens, you might be experiencing a case of severe tooth sensitivity.  Whether due to over-brushing, decay, or bacteria, tooth sensitivity is caused when the tooth enamel is compromised.  When exposed to extreme temperatures, the center of the tooth reacts with a pain response.  Sometimes, the pain can linger long after the offending food is eaten.  This can make it seem like something else is going on with your tooth.  But the best thing to do is see your dentist so that he or she can treat it.


You may be grinding your teeth while asleep.  Also called bruxism, this is a dangerous habit, of which you may be totally unaware.  As you may have guessed, this can cause your teeth to ache during the day.  Not only can bruxism cause your teeth to hurt, but it is also extremely harmful to your smile and can cause immense stress on the teeth as well as the tooth roots.  This can make your teeth more likely to fracture and become sensitive.  Your gum tissue may also be more likely to be inflamed.  Your dentist can treat this condition easily by prescribing a mouthguard and introducing relaxation techniques, but only if you see him or her.  The sooner the better.

Trauma to the Tooth

Any kind of trauma to your tooth, such as an accident, chip, crack, or even damage caused by decay, can cause pain.  The smallest of cracks can allow bacteria to enter your tooth and reach the nerve.  That is why no matter how minor the chip or other defect is, it is important that you see your dentist right away to avoid further damage, pain, and infection.

Impacted Wisdom Teeth

Third molars, or wisdom teeth, often do not have room to grow in properly.  When this happens, they may grow in sideways, pushing into the roots of the teeth next to them.  This is called impaction, and it can be very painful.  Your dentist can evaluate your wisdom teeth positions and decide if you need to have them removed or not.

The bottom line is, if you are experiencing tooth pain, you really need to see your dentist right away.  Otherwise, your risk of losing one or more teeth permanently becomes more likely,  Regular dental checkups are always a good idea, to spot problems early--before they become painful.

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