Ouch!… toothache

image.axdToothache normally refers to pain from teeth or jaws from a dental condition. Ranging from very mild to severe pain, its natures way of letting you know there’s a problem!

The most common type of toothache is from tooth decay (dental cavity) which initially starts off as sensitivity to hot, cold or sweet things and lasts for seconds. This toothache can be treated by a simple filling, after removing the decay from the tooth.

Allowed to go untreated, this pain changes to a more severe pain which can last longer than a few minutes and often comes on out of the blue or wakes people from sleep.

At this point the decay has often reached the nerve in the tooth causing the tooth to die and form an abscess in the bone. At this late stage we normally have to remove the nerve of the tooth (root canal) or extract the tooth. The lesson here is to have the toothache seen to early.

Sometimes more severe aches can be from infected wisdom teeth, food impaction between teeth or from gum disease. Sensitive teeth can also be from heavily worn or eroded areas, leaking fillings or exposed root surfaces. All of these can easily be treated. You would be surprised!

Another common type of toothache is when the teeth are very sore to clean of which is normally from a crack in a filling or the tooth itself. Again…easily fixed!

Less common but something we see from time to time is where an ache in the jaw is from a sinus infection or angina.

Remember not all problems in the mouth cause pain so regular check ups are important to catch things early to keep them small and cheaper. Should you experience toothache make sure to see your dental team as soon as possible.

As someone once said “ignore your teeth and they’ll go away”!