Toothaches, or pain in a particular tooth or area of the mouth are not always caused by tooth decay and cavities in affected teeth. There are other potential reasons for the pain and discomfort. To ensure a proper diagnosis it is best to schedule an oral examination with your dentist and not wait until your next regular checkup.
Some of the other reasons you could be experiencing a toothache include:
1. Tooth Sensitivity – If you notice the pain only when eating or drinking hot or cold beverages and foods, it could mean your teeth’s enamel could be thinning and your teeth have become more sensitive.
2. Gum Disease – The early stages of gum disease could cause tooth pain and is typically accompanied by red, swollen gums, which bleed easily.
3. Fractures in the Tooth – Micro-fractures in the tooth’s enamel to larger breaks and chips can cause pain if left untreated.
4. Abscessed Tooth – If tooth decay is not addressed, its infection can spread into the root of the tooth and surrounding gum tissue, causing pain and discomfort.
5. Impacted Wisdom Teeth – When the developing wisdom teeth are growing horizontally and pushing directly into the other teeth, you can experience pain in the rear parts of the upper and lower jaw.
6. Bruxism (Teeth Grinding) – For people that grind their teeth from stress or unknowingly while they sleep, they could accidently damage the teeth and cause pain and discomfort.
7. Improper Brushing and Flossing – If you using the wrong type of toothbrush or dental floss or are brushing and flossing with excessive force, you could be putting too much pressure on the teeth and gums, which can lead to gum disease.
8. Missing/Damaged Fillings – If a filling falls out and is not replace, or wears out where it is no longer fully sealed within the tooth, it creates an opening for bacteria to get into and infect the tooth, which can lead to a toothache.
9. Missing/Damaged Dental Crowns – Just like fillings if your dental crown falls off or is damaged, it can cause pain and discomfort.
10. Sinus Infections – If you have a sinus infection, you could experience tooth pain in your upper teeth on the both sides of the face. This is because the sinus passages are inflamed and putting pressure onto the gums and teeth.
As you can see not all toothaches are the result of cavities and tooth decay. It is important to see your dentist right away to determine the actual cause of the pain and prescribe the proper treatment.
Even if the pain is only minor and intermittent, it is not a good idea to put off seeing your dentist. The cause for the pain could worsen, leading to further problems. For instance, an untreated tooth fracture could allow for tooth decay to get inside the tooth and root and lead to an abscessed tooth. If you are experiencing any level of tooth pain or discomfort, please call Oasis Family Dental at (807) 623-2662 today to schedule an appointment!