Toothache: Causes, Symptoms, Treatments, And Prevention

Posted by One & Truly Dental Jul 13, 2022

A toothache is any pain in and around a tooth. Typically, a toothache refers to discomfort in the gums and teeth. However, pain can even radiate to affect your jaw and ears. A toothache is usually caused by a tooth infection. If untreated, a tooth infection can spread and lead to more widespread complications.

What Causes A Toothache?

A toothache can be caused by a cavity, abscess, injury, or other irritation to the tooth. A common cause of toothache is tooth decay, which is caused by the buildup of plaque on the teeth. The other causes of toothache include the following:

  • Tooth fracture (broken tooth).
  • A damaged filling.
  • Grinding or clenching of teeth. 
  • Infected gums.
  • Impacted wisdom teeth

What Are The Symptoms of A Toothache?

A toothache is a symptom of an underlying dental problem. It can be caused by improper oral hygiene or tooth decay.

When a toothache arises, it’s usually accompanied by one of the following symptoms:

  • Pain
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Swelling around the affected area
  • Foul taste in the mouth
  • Bad breath
  • Fever
  • Gums that are red and inflamed

Toothache Treatments

A toothache can be caused due to decay, gum disease, or tooth injury. All of these three causes need to be addressed differently.

  • Tooth decay

Tooth decay leads to cavities, which can result in a toothache. If tooth decay is the cause of your toothache, then the dentist will treat your cavity. The decayed tooth material will be removed with dental instruments. Then a dental filling material will be used to fill the cavity. If the decay and infection have reached your teeth pulp, a root canal treatment may be suggested. You may also receive a dental crown if the cavity is very large.

  • Gum disease

Gum disease (periodontal disease) leads to infection and receding gums. This can cause toothache along with swollen gums and pus. The dentist will treat your infection and gum disease. Treatment may include deep cleaning or gum surgery.

  • Tooth injury

Tooth injury can cause toothache along with pain when biting and chewing. Treatment depends on the type of injury. Tooth fractures are treated with a filling material. A root canal may be needed if the pulp is affected. A dental crown may be needed if the tooth is fractured too severely.

  • Tooth grinding

If your toothache is the result of excessive tooth grinding, your dentist may suggest you wear a mouth guard. 

Can You Prevent A Toothache?

Prevention is always the best medicine! While you can’t avoid cavities completely, you may be able to better protect your teeth from decay. Here are a few preventive measures to consider:

  • Brush and floss your teeth after every meal and snack. Using fluoride toothpaste can also help strengthen your teeth.
  • Drink lots of water! Not only does water keep your mouth clean, but it also helps keep your body hydrated.
  •  Avoid foods high in sugar. Bacteria love sugar, and too much of it can lead to tooth decay.
  • Visit your dentist regularly. You can prevent small issues from turning into larger ones with regular dental cleanings.

To find out more about the dental services offered at One and Truly Dental, call (516)-759-0086 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit us at 70 Glen St, #240 Glen Cove, NY, 11542.

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