Toothaches come in two different types, but they both share the same symptom — outrageous pain. Some describe toothache as nearly equivalent to the pain of pregnancy, and doctors universally recognize that severe toothache is absolutely debilitating. Before we describe the typical causes, first let us examine the two types of tooth pain.
Type 1: Your pain is localized to a specific tooth.
Type 2: Your pain is on one side of your face, perhaps even an upper or lower jaw, but that is as far as you can describe the source of the pain.
To take these descriptions further during our dentist’s diagnosis, we may ask the following questions:
- Is your pain dull, spread across a broad area?
- Is your pain sharp, caused by specific actions, like biting, chewing or drinking hot or cold beverages?
- Does the pain feel like it comes from inside your teeth, below the teeth or in one of your sinuses?
Simply put, toothache is usually caused by bacterial infection. This infection can reside strictly inside a tooth, but it can also spread to the gums and the jawbone. Broad infections can lead to abscesses, and these create to further pain and do significant damage to the surrounding tissues.
Tooth sensitivity caused by specific actions is often due to exposed roots, requiring treatment for gum pockets or gum recession. Other possibilities exist, like cysts or tumors. X-rays, careful questioning and a physical exam allow the Marconi Dental Group to diagnose and treat your toothache in the vast majority of cases.
Once found, the cause of the toothache is immediately treated. If the tooth or jawbone is significantly damaged, extraction becomes the only option. At that point we discuss how to replace the missing tooth, either with a dental implant, a bridge or a combination of restorations.
Don’t Put Off Treatment!
The important thing to remember about toothache is that it has a cause. While the toothache may come or go, it is a warning signal from your body that a tooth or teeth are at major risk of loss. If the infection spreads to the bloodstream, you can even face a major medical emergency. The sooner you treat a toothache, the cheaper and easier the treatment will be. You never save money by ignoring a toothache!