You can have toothache for many reasons. All of them are serious and require treatment, but some of them are more dangerous than others. Read on to find out what causes toothache and what to do about it.
If your teeth start to hurt when you’re eating something cold or sweet, but the pain goes away right after you finish eating, your toothache is likely caused by cavities. To correct this problem, you’ll only need one or a few tooth fillings. Another sign of cavities is food pieces getting stuck in your teeth. If there is a space somewhere between your teeth where food didn’t get stuck, but now it does, you should see a dentist.
2. Cracked enamel
Another common problem is the enamel chipped or cracked near the gum. This defect is often caused by stress or malocclusion. Both these factors lead to involuntary tooth grinding, which creates too much stress on the enamel, and it cracks in the weakest place – at the base. Cracked enamel manifests in sensitivity to various irritants and toothache. A filling should solve the problem.
If one specific tooth is affected by a shooting pain that radiates to the temple, it’s quite possible that you have pulpitis (inflammation of the nerve in a tooth). If you have pulpitis, the affected tooth can also be sensitive to cold and very sweet food and drinks, and the pain may linger for a while even after you’ve finished eating or drinking.
Pulpitis can lead to a serious complication and the most dangerous cause of toothache, namely periodontitis, in which inflammation spreads to the supporting structures of the teeth. In this case, the infection doesn’t have enough space within the tooth and spreads deeper, “dissolving” the bone that supports the affected tooth. Symptoms of periodontitis include pain when biting and chewing, aching pain, and feeling as if something is pushing on the tooth from within. A fistula may appear on the gum near the affected tooth. There may be pus leaking from the fistula, when there’s not enough space for it in the tissue surrounding the tooth.
Pulpitis and periodontitis are extremely dangerous, and they need to be treated by a qualified professional as soon as possible. If you think you may have one of these, don’t delay getting help, as waiting may lead to the loss of a tooth.
Source: The article is based on materials provided by Nikita Golubenko, dental therapist and pediatric dentist.
This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for any harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.