Tooth Pain and When to visit the Dentist
Adults have a higher tolerance of pain compared to children, so you might find it confusing whether to see your dentist or not when experiencing tooth pain. While there are remedies you can do to subside the pain, there are still cases when you need professional treatment and care.
Here’s a guide to help you understand tooth pain and decide whether a checkup is necessary or not:
Why do you experience tooth pain?
Tooth pain is not always because of a bad tooth. There can be several potential causes, which can be categorised into two groups.
- Dental causes – These are the teeth-related reasons. The tooth pain can be caused by tooth decay, damaged teeth, gum disease, or malocclusion—the imperfect positioning of the teeth giving a person an uneven bite.
- Non-Dental causes – These are the reasons outside of teeth infection. The pain you associate with tooth pain can be caused by muscle pain, a sinus infection, vitamin B12 deficiency, neurologic abnormalities, or cluster headaches.
How to know if you’re experiencing a tooth pain
Here are some signs that the pain you feel is due to dental causes:
- You experience pain in your mouth area. The intensity of the pain may differ. It can be a sharp pain, a throbbing pain, or a dull pain depending on what’s happening in your teeth.
- You experience difficulty in biting. Every time you bite down, a sharp pain occurs. That could mean that a crack or other problems are occurring in your tooth.
- You have red, painful, and swollen gums. It can be a sign of an infected tooth, and the infection has reached its surrounded tissues.
- There is pressure in your jaw causing pressure in your tooth too. This pressure can come from grinding or clenching of teeth.
How to deal with tooth pain
The severity of pain may vary depending on its cause and your dental health condition. It’s still best to seek professional advice to understand where your tooth pain is coming from and to learn what treatments to undergo and medications to take.
For tooth decay
- If the decay is minor like a small cavity, it can be treated with a simple filling.
- If the decay has reached the pulp of your tooth, then, a root canal might be needed.
For chipped, cracked, or broken teeth
- If it’s minor damage, it can be treated with a repair or sealing.
- If the damage is extensive and can no longer be repaired, there might be a need to extract your teeth and replace them with a denture or fake teeth.
For gum diseases
- Regular flossing and brushing can help improve your condition. Regular checkups with your dentist will also help monitor the improvement of your case.
- For extensive cases, some dentists will encourage you to undergo a scaling process. It’s the thorough cleaning of your teeth until below the gum line to remove plaque buildup.
How to relieve tooth pain at home
Since you cannot always rush to the dentist for a quick fixing, here’s what you can do at home for temporary relief:
- Hold a cold compress on your cheek (the outside of the affected area)
- Gargle warm salt water to rinse your mouth
- Rub a garlic clove on the sore areas
- Drink over-the-counter pain reliever
When should you see a dentist?
For tooth decay
If the pain did not subside after one to two days, consider visiting your dentist. Dull pain isn’t a sign that your teeth are fine. If you think the pain is tolerable but persistent, the condition might get worse in the future. See your dentist immediately.
For damaged teeth
If your tooth is damaged, only the dentist can fix it. Set an appointment as soon as you can.
Other concerns can be addressed during the regular dentist visit.
Make sure to visit your dentist at least twice a year for regular cleaning and checkup. This way, you get to prevent any serious dental problems from happening.
If you’re looking for a dental hygienist in Milton Keynes to help you with your dental concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us at Clayton Dental MK. Our dentists can help you deal with your tooth pain!