Everything You Need to Know About Your Tooth Pain

Roughly 91% of Americans between the ages of 20 and 64 have some degree of tooth decay! That means almost everyone in the country would benefit from a trip to the dentist every six months.

As common as tooth decay is, it may not be the peskiest dental problem we face. There are a number of other oral health problems that cause actual tooth pain!

Sometimes it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly where the pain is coming from and what is causing it. Putting a finger on your tooth pain is the first step toward treating the root problem.

Read on to learn more about the top 10 causes of tooth pain and what your dentist can do to help!

1. Misaligned Teeth

Some people think braces are only for looks, but did you know braces could solve the cause of your tooth pain?

When your teeth are misaligned, it affects the way you bite. Your teeth should rest comfortably, one on top of the other, without applying too much pressure to one another. If your teeth are misaligned, you may experience wear and pressure and your teeth may shift further over time.

If you think you have misaligned teeth, consult your dentist about orthodontistry.

2. Impacted Wisdom Teeth

An estimated 5%–37% of people are born without wisdom teeth. Unfortunately, most of us aren’t that lucky and will have to undergo wisdom tooth removal at some point in our lives!

An impacted wisdom tooth is one that never erupts through the gums. When this happens, the tooth festers below the gums and may push on your molars, causing severe pain.

The best solution to impacted wisdom teeth is removal! Ask your dentist to take a look and schedule this low-impact surgery as soon as possible.

3. Home Habits

Believe it or not, there is such a thing as brushing and flossing too hard! When you experience pain around the teeth and gums, examine your gum line for swelling, redness, and bleeding. If you notice any of these symptoms, you may be applying too much pressure during your home dental routine.

Your dentist will be happy to assess your brushing and flossing habits and guide you through the proper brushing and flossing process!

4. Teeth Grinding

Does the pain in your teeth radiate to your jaw and possibly even your neck muscles? If so, you might grind your teeth. A lot of people who grind their teeth don’t realize it’s happening because it happens when they’re sleeping!

If you grind your teeth, ask your dentist about designing a mouth guard you can wear at night.

5. Damaged Fillings

Fillings protect sensitive areas in our teeth. When they crack or fall out, those sensitive spots are exposed. This may cause sharp pain, especially when something comes into contact with the troubled tooth.

Your dentist can dispose of the damaged filling and replace it with a new one.

6. Sensitivity

Do you have trouble with hot or cold foods and beverages? This occurs when our enamel wears down and exposes the layer of the tooth that contains the nerve.

At home, switch to a desensitizing toothpaste and use a soft-bristled toothbrush. At the dentist, ask about dental fillings or, if the tooth is in really bad shape, dental implants.

7. Tooth Fractures

Worn enamel is not the only thing that can expose your tooth’s nerve. Cracks and chips may also make their way to the tooth’s nerve. In a lot of cases, it may not happen right away but will get worse over time!

Depending on the extent of the damage, your dentist may advise the removal of the tooth. In this case, the removal would likely be followed by a dental implant. Dental implants are designed to look just like the rest of your teeth but without the tooth pain!

8. Gum Disease

If your gums are inflamed or prone to bleeding, the issue may not be the way you brush. Instead, there is a chance you have developed gum disease, an infection in the gums. When left untreated, gum disease can spread and cause damage to the teeth and jawbone, in addition to the gums themselves.

Depending on the advancement, your dentist may clear up the gum disease with antibiotics. If it is too far along, surgery may be necessary.

9. Tooth Abscesses

A tooth abscess occurs when the root and surrounding tissue of a tooth are infected. Tooth abscesses tend to cause pulsating pain that radiates through the jaw. This can make it tricky to weed out the real culprit!

The best way to locate the abscess and treat it is to take a trip to the dentist. Don’t sleep on this particular kind of tooth pain or things could go from bad to worse!

10. Tooth Decay

That’s right; sometimes the root of your tooth pain really is tooth decay!

When tooth decay strengthens its hold on your teeth, it can cause sensitivity and even sharp pain. This occurs when the decay eats its way to the center of the tooth. You’ve probably heard of this phenomenon before: We usually call it a cavity!

If you develop a cavity, your dentist can clear out the parts of the tooth affected by decay and make room for a filling. Once you have a filling, all of those sensitive areas are protected!

What’s up with that tooth pain?

If you are experiencing tooth pain, why wait to see if it gets worse when you could have a chat with your dentist?

Dr. Brandon Tyler is ready to treat patients all over the Duvall, Washington, area. Book an appointment today and get that tooth pain taken care of!