A toothache is a dental emergency that can suddenly arise for many different reasons. Whether it is because of gum disease, sensitive teeth, or a fractured tooth, toothaches are always painful and unpleasant. Read on to learn about common toothache causes, what can you do for a toothache, and when to see your dentist.
Depending on the symptoms, duration, and severity of your toothache, the pain could come from several different causes. Here are some of the most common reasons for a toothache:
Whatever the reason behind a toothache, it will go away as soon as the underlying cause is removed. For example, toothache caused by tooth sensitivity will go away when you finish your cold or sweet food and drinks. Similarly, dental pain because of an underlying infection usually goes away after taking pain medication. However, in advanced stages, painkillers are not effective and you may need to contact your dentist to book an emergency appointment, in order to treat the root cause of the toothache.
If you are suffering from a toothache, you should:
Take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen, if you are medically cleared to do so. Since swelling is one of the underlying causes of toothache pain, you should see some temporary relief.
Check your oral hygiene products. If you’re using a whitening gel or toothpaste, stop using it for a few days to see if symptoms improve. Try using toothpaste formulated for sensitive teeth instead. Keep in mind that sensitivity products require everyday use and can take up to two weeks before you see full results.
If you have allergies or a possible sinus infection, treat those conditions accordingly. This could alleviate any pressure against your upper teeth, which may mimic toothaches.
Rinse your mouth with warm salt water to alleviate any swelling related to your gums. A teaspoon of table salt in a tall glass of water is sufficient. Rinse vigorously and repeat the process until you’ve used the entire glass. You can do this 2-3 times per day if necessary.
There are several ways to treat a toothache depending on the underlying cause of your pain. The pain could be from a small cavity that needs to be cleaned out and filled. However, aggressive gum disease may require deep cleanings to remove the bacteria around your teeth and possible gum surgery. If you have physical damage to the tooth itself, depending on the extent of the problem, there are a number of different solutions, from a filling to a root canal, or in some cases, a crown may be required.