A toothache can stop you in your tracks. At-home remedies may take the edge off the pain, but they can’t treat the underlying cause of your toothache.
Dr. Mehrnoosh Darj and her dedicated team at Dr. Darj Dental understand just how disruptive a bad toothache can be. That’s why we reserve several appointments each day for urgent care — including problems like toothaches.
Toothaches entail different treatments depending on what’s causing your symptoms. Here, we discuss four common causes of toothaches.
1. You have a cavity
Sometimes cavities are so small that you might not even realize you have one until the dental X-ray detects it. Other times, cavities let you know they’re there because of tooth pain. In addition to increased sensitivity, you might feel throbbing or aching. This can occur when the decay affects the pulp of your tooth, where the nerves are located.
Filling a cavity not only halts the progress of the decay, but it also prevents future complications from developing. Once the decay is gone, you get relief from the pain.
2. Your tooth is cracked or fractured
Fractures and cracks are more than just cosmetic concerns. These cracks expose your tooth’s nerves and allow bacteria to enter. Cracked teeth may cause toothaches that come and go but worsen when you bite down.
Repairing a broken tooth restores both the appearance and health of your tooth.
3. Your filling is damaged
Even though fillings are designed to withstand the forces of chewing and biting, they aren’t indestructible. If your filling is damaged or broken, it can also cause a toothache.
If you have a damaged filling, we can repair it. We offer mercury-free dentistry, which means you can feel good about the new fillings you receive.
4. Your tooth is abscessed
An abscessed tooth develops as a result of a bacterial infection. Three different infections — gingival, periapical, and periodontal — can cause abscesses to form. An abscess is a pocket of pus, and these infections can cause significant toothaches.
A periapical abscess, for example, forms at the tip of your tooth’s root. This type of abscess and infection are typically treated with a root canal. During a root canal, any infected tooth matter is removed, which helps to treat the infection and eliminate your terrible toothache.
What to do if you have a toothache
Toothaches can be mild or debilitating. While over-the-counter pain medicine or oral pain-relieving gels can provide temporary relief, it’s important to seek dental care promptly so we can address the underlying cause of your pain.
You might find additional relief with:
- Cold compresses on your cheek
- Swishing with salt water (1 teaspoon of salt mixed into 1 cup of warm water)
- Flossing to remove any debris stuck near your tooth
Sometimes toothaches can be accompanied by tooth sensitivity, and you may find that avoiding hot or cold foods or beverages is beneficial.
Don’t let a toothache go untreated. If your tooth hurts, call Dr. Darj Dental at 915-213-4097 or book an appointment online.