Ouch! Causes of Tooth Pain and How to Find Relief
Perhaps nothing disrupts day-to-day life quite like tooth pain. Stemming from causes that may be minor or severe in nature, tooth pain can stop a person in their tracks and make even the simple act of smiling seem like an insurmountable feat. Tooth pain, experienced in any degree, is a symptom that many patients in Plano, TX deal with at some point in their lives. While it may be a common occurrence, the caring team at Parker West Dental Associates wants to help anyone with this issue get to the root of the discomfort and stop tooth pain as quickly as possible.
When tooth pain affects you or a family member, it can impact you in ways that may range from a slight annoyance to a debilitating situation. Our team of dentists is highly skilled at diagnosing and treating tooth pain and providing the comfort your family needs when this type of oral symptom strikes. Read on to learn about the leading tooth pain causes and treatment solutions we may use to provide much-needed relief.
Get to the Source: Common Tooth Pain Causes
Tooth pain may be localized to a specific tooth or area of the mouth or more generalized, encompassing a region or side of the jaw. Whatever your tooth pain causes may be, our dentists want to help you quickly overcome the discomfort and get back to enjoying a healthy and happy smile. Some of the most common tooth pain causes we treat include:
Tooth Decay (Cavities)
A cavity is often the prime suspect for many Plano, TX patients when it comes to tooth pain. Dental cavities do not always cause tooth pain, especially when in the early stages. But if the decay extends into the deeper layers of the tooth, the result may be discomfort or a painful situation. When caught early enough, cavities can often be repaired with a tooth-colored filling or dental crown. Leaving a cavity untreated may allow it to progress to an abscess, which is a more serious oral condition.
Infected or Abscessed Teeth
When bacteria make their way into the center (pulp) area of a tooth (from decay, trauma, or a crack), the tooth becomes infected. This infection may travel down the internal portions of the tooth roots, often creating a painful pressure as it expands into the surrounding bone tissue. Abscessed teeth usually need root canal therapy in order to save them. Treating teeth that are infected in this way as soon as possible can also help to prevent further conditions from impacting your oral and general health and wellness.
Tooth sensitivity often presents as a painful feeling and is usually a result of gum recession (when the gums pull away from the teeth and expose the more sensitive root surfaces). Hot and cold temperatures from foods and drinks, and even the mere act of brushing the teeth, may cause mild to severe sensitivity in the teeth. Using sensitivity toothpaste can often provide relief from this type of tooth pain. However, treatments like gum grafting or tooth-colored fillings may be needed to cover the exposed roots and truly address the problem.
As the third set of molars in the mouth, wisdom teeth are often impacted, ill-positioned, and lack the necessary space to erupt properly and without causing harm to the oral cavity. Wisdom teeth tend to make their move toward eruption between the ages of 17 – 21. During this phase in life, patients may feel the effects of partially or fully impacted wisdom teeth, such as pressure in the jaw or pain in surrounding teeth or gum tissues. The ideal treatment, in this case, is typically extraction of the wisdom teeth.
Teeth Grinding or Clenching (Bruxism)
Teeth grinding and clenching, or bruxism, is a habit affecting many Plano patients. When a patient grinds or clenches the upper and lower teeth together, this places stress on the teeth, any restorations, and the TMJ (temporomandibular joints). Bruxism can result in a number of uncomfortable or painful conditions in the teeth and jaw, from TMJ disorders to worn or cracked teeth. To help minimize the effects of teeth grinding and protect structures in the mouth, Parker West Dental Associates offers custom night guards, which are worn while sleeping.
Oral Trauma or Injuries
Accidents happen, including those that affect the mouth, and are often a source of tooth pain for patients of all ages. Whether occurring from sports related-accidents or other types of trauma, any injury to the mouth should be evaluated by one of our dentists as soon as possible. Conditions like avulsed (knocked-out) or extruded (partially knocked-out) teeth require immediate care. Even broken teeth or restorations resulting from an injury to the mouth should receive prompt attention from our team at Parker West Dental Associates.
Loose or Damaged Restorations
Dental restorations like fillings, crowns, bridges, and veneers may become loose or damaged due to normal wear and tear in the mouth, biting down on something hard, or other conditions in the mouth. Many times, this type of event can lead to tooth pain or discomfort in the mouth. Visiting with our experienced and skilled dentists as soon as you notice this type of issue can stop tooth pain, minimize your discomfort, and help restore health to your smile.
The roots of the upper molar and premolar (bicuspid) teeth sit very close to the floor of the maxillary sinus cavities. Often, when the sinus cavities are fluid-filled, infected, or inflamed, the resulting symptom will feel like tooth pain. It is important to rule out any other dental concerns, however, and likely visit with your primary care physician if pain in this area is not tooth-related.
Stop Tooth Pain and Save Your Smile
If tooth pain is affecting your health, comfort, and wellness, our dentists at Parker West Dental Associates want to see you as quickly as possible. Some tooth pain causes in Plano-area patients are emergency situations and require timely treatment to preserve oral health. We utilize the latest in diagnostic dental procedures, including low-radiation digital x-rays and laser cavity detection, to evaluate and get to the source of tooth pain. Once our skilled practitioners determine the root cause of your pain, we can present the recommended treatment options to stop tooth pain and let you get on with your day in comfort. The type of oral condition often dictates the method of care. Save your smile and your oral health and get in touch with Parker West Dental Associates in Plano, TX right away if you or a loved one has tooth pain.