Posts for tag: toothache
Are you convinced that your toothache will get better if you just give it enough time? Although many aches and pains do improve with time, tooth pain typically worsens the longer you ignore it. Ignoring pain can also increase the risk that you'll need extensive dental work when you do eventually see a dentist. Menomonee Falls, WI, dentists Dr. Brian Stark, Dr. Thomas J. Dudley, & Dr. Malea M. Blise offer the dental care you need to protect your smile.
What can cause tooth pain?
Pain in a tooth may occur due to:
- Cavities: Tooth decay can cause a toothache, particularly if your cavity is large. If you put off a visit to the dentist, decay can destroy your entire tooth or spread to adjacent teeth. A filling may not be effective if you have a very large filling. You may need an inlay, onlay, or crown instead.
- Loose Fillings: Pain may occur if a filling has become loose and air enters the tooth. If you put off a dental visit, a new cavity may form around the margin of the filling.
- Cracked Teeth: Cracks tend to make teeth very sensitive and can allow bacteria to enter. Pain can occur when you chew or eat or drink hot or cold foods or beverages. Cracked teeth can be caused by trauma, grinding your teeth at night, or wear and tear.
- Gum Disease: Your teeth and your entire mouth may hurt if you have gum disease. The disease is much easier to treat when it's diagnosed in the early stages. If your teeth hurt and your gums are sore, swollen, and painful, schedule an appointment with your Menomonee Falls dentist.
- Inflammation or Infection in Your Pulp: Tooth pain may be due to inflamed or infected tooth pulp. Removing the pulp during root canal therapy will eliminate your symptoms and help you avoid tooth loss.
- Abscess: You may also experience tooth pain if you have an abscess, a bacterial infection in a tooth or your gums. Abscesses never go away on their own and can put your health in jeopardy if they're not treated promptly. Without antibiotic treatment, the bacteria may enter your bloodstream and infect other parts of your body.
- Sinusitis: Tooth pain may occur when fluids in your sinuses press on your teeth during a bout of sinusitis. Although the pain goes away eventually, it may be difficult to tell if you have a cavity or sinusitis if you don't see the dentist.
A visit to the dentist can end your tooth pain. Call Menomonee Falls, WI, dentists Dr. Brian Stark, Dr. Thomas J. Dudley, & Dr. Malea M. Blise at (262) 251-6555 to schedule your appointment.
If your child begins complaining of tooth pain without an accompanying fever or facial swelling, it’s likely not an emergency. Still, you should have us check it—and the sooner the better if the pain persists or keeps your child up at night. There are a number of possible causes, any of which if untreated could be detrimental to their dental health.
Before coming in, though, you can do a cursory check of your child’s mouth to see if you notice any abnormalities. The most common cause for a toothache is tooth decay, which you might be able to see evidence of in the form of cavities or brown spots on the tooth’s biting surfaces. If you notice swollen or reddened gums around a tooth, this could be a possible sign of a localized area of infection known as an abscess. You should also ask your child if they fell or were hit in the mouth and look for any signs of an injury.
If you don’t see anything unusual, there may be another cause—stuck food like popcorn or candy lodged and exerting painful pressure on the gum tissue or tooth. You may be able to intervene in this case: gently floss around the affected tooth to try to dislodge any food particles. The pain may ease if you’re able to remove any. Even so, if you see abnormalities in the mouth or the pain doesn’t subside, you should definitely plan to come in for an examination.
In the meantime, you can help ease discomfort with a child-appropriate dose of ibuprofen or acetaminophen. An ice pack against the outside jaw may also help, but be careful not to apply ice directly to the skin. And under no circumstances rub aspirin or other painkiller directly on the gums—like ice, these products can burn the skin. If these efforts don’t help you should try to see us the same day or first thing the next morning for advanced treatment.
The main thing is not to panic. Knowing what to look for and when to see us will help ensure your child’s tooth pain will be cared for promptly.
If you would like more information on handling dental issues with your child, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “A Child’s Toothache.”