Toothache - Causes and Treatment

What to do when you have a toothache 

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.

Possible toothache causes 

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: 

  • Cracked or abscessed teeth
  • Periodontal disease
  • Teeth grinding 
  • Leaky fillings
  • Gum recession
  • Cysts
  • Whitening products
  • Untreated cavities
  • Sinus infections
  • New tooth decay
  • Impacted teeth (eg wisdom teeth)

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. 

How to get rid of a toothache

If you are suffering from a toothache, you should: 

  • Brush and floss around your tooth, checking to see if there is something stuck under the gums or between your teeth (such as food.) 
  • 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. 

  • The final option is to visit a dentist. When you see a dentist, you will have your tooth, the affected area, and your entire mouth examined. They will review your symptoms and help you determine the specific cause of the pain, so you can make an informed decision on the most appropriate long-term solution for your toothache. 

Dental treatment for toothaches 

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.

If you are suffering from a toothache or any other dental emergency, click this link to book an emergency appointment with Toothfairy™ dental team today:

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