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Should I Visit a Dentist for a Toothache?
If you are dealing with a dull ache or sharp pain in your tooth, you may be dealing with a toothache. Tooth pain is usually caused by an underlying condition, mostly when the inner layer of the tooth is affected. If left untreated, the situation could worsen and cause a major upset to the patient’s life. A dentist can evaluate the tooth to learn the cause and recommend the appropriate treatment.
When to visit the dentist about a toothache
A visit to the dental office is necessary if you start experiencing symptoms such as:
- Persistent pain
- Tooth inflammation
- Facial or jaw swelling
- Gum bleeding
- Redness around the gums
- Fever, accompanied by earache or pain
- Dry mouth or eyes
Most people try to prolong a dental visit as much as possible, either to avoid the cost or because of dental anxiety. Dentists are professionally trained to help provide relief to mouth pain by diagnosing its root cause and recommending the appropriate treatment.
What to do if the dentist is not immediately available
While waiting for the dentist, patients can take the following measures to get relief:
- Apply a cold compress on the origin of the pain
- Take pain meds such as paracetamol and ibuprofen to alleviate pain
- If the pain is unbearable, patients can consider visiting any emergency dental office close to them.
Causes of toothache
The common causes of toothache include:
Tooth damages: When the tooth is broken and the nerve endings in the tooth core are exposed, the person will experience severe teeth sensitivity and pain. The teeth will not heal on its own; therefore, a visit to the dentist is necessary to repair the damaged tooth.
Tooth decay: This occurs when bacteria plaques start producing acids that degrade the enamel to create small pits on the teeth. If this is not treated promptly, the decay will worsen until it reaches the tooth’s pulp. Routine visits to the dentist and good oral care help prevent cavities before they happen. The dentist will recommend dental fillings to restore a decayed tooth.
Gum disease: Caused by excessive accumulation of plaque on the teeth, gum disease can cause gum bleeding and tooth pain.
Sensitive teeth: This could be caused by receding gums or enamel thinning. People who have sensitive teeth will experience pain when having hot or cold drinks.
Other causes of toothache include loose fillings, sinus infections, dental abscesses and pulp friction.
A toothache is not always intense. The recurrent or intermittent pain can be disruptive, but not enough to go for a dental checkup. However, waiting until the ache worsens is never the right choice. Regardless of the type, cause or severity of the tooth pain, it is better to call the dentist immediately to book an appointment. The cause of the pain may not be immediately apparent, but a conclusive diagnosis from the dentist and professional treatment is definitely the best call.
The dentist will also teach you about the importance of good oral hygiene and routine dental visits: to keep your teeth healthy and fully functional.
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