What is Causing My Tooth Pain and How Do I Stop My Teeth From Hurting?
To properly understand tooth pain, it is important to have a working understanding of the structure of your teeth. The tooth consists of multiple parts.
On the outside of the tooth, there is a hard layer of enamel, which protects the outer crown of the tooth above the gumline. The part below the gumline is known as the root, and this holds the tooth into the jaw. It is covered in cementum just like enamel covers the crown. Below the outer layers there is dentine, a bone-like substance.
Beneath the dentine in the interior cavern of the tooth there is tooth pulp. This contains the nerves and blood vessels and is the part of your tooth that is ‘alive’ and most commonly responsible for tooth pain. It is the nerves contained in pulp that send pain or temperature signals to your brain.
Common causes of tooth pain
Tooth pain can present in a lot of different ways at your dentist. For you, it may be that tooth pain comes and goes in waves. It may be a throbbing tooth pain that comes and goes. You may experience a shooting pain, or an extreme tooth pain that prevents you from sleeping. It may simply be sensitivity to hot and cold food and drink.
Here are some common causes of these types of pain as seen by your dental professional:
- A broken tooth or fractured tooth. Given this often occurs through a dental emergency, the cause is often obvious. It is recommended that you attend your nearest dentist as soon as possible for pain relief and to get the tooth treated as soon as possible.
- Tooth decay, cavities or a tooth abscess. This results when plaque and associated bacteria ‘’eat away’’ at the outer layers of the teeth. Dentine is itself sensitive and can cause tooth pain when it becomes irritated by this bacteria or exposed to food/drink in the mouth. When the cavity reaches the pulp, the tooth pain may become even more extreme especially if an abscess forms on the root of the tooth.
- This may be in the pulp or of the gums. If the swelling presses on your nerves, then it can cause extreme tooth pain.
- Worn-down teeth due to clenching teeth, grinding teeth, or bruxism.
- Damaged dental work. If you had a filling that was protecting your tooth and this has become damaged, it may have exposed your tooth and may be resulting in tooth pain.
- New teeth erupting, such as adult teeth or wisdom teeth. This can also cause gum pain.
- Misaligned teeth which may misalign your bite and cause jaw pain or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain.
Referred tooth pain
As your dental specialist will tell you, tooth pain can become even more complicated because it is not always the painful tooth that has the issue. Instead, the pain may result from another medical condition in another part of the body. Here are a few possible causes of referred tooth pain that can make it hard to understand what is causing your tooth pain:
- Headaches or migraines. If you have a headache or migraine, this could be causing your tooth pain, particularly if it is a neurovascular headache.
- Sinus issues. If your sinuses are blocked, inflamed or infected, then this can cause referred pain in your teeth, particularly your upper teeth.
- Impacted vagus nerve. This nerve is incorporated in the lower jaw but pain in this nerve is usually caused by a cardiac issue with the lungs or heart.
- Trigeminal neuralgia. This refers to a type of chronic pain that occurs in the nerve that carries pain from your face to your brain.
Your dentist can assess the tooth or teeth that are in pain, and let you know whether the likely culprit is referred pain or if the pain results from an issue with the tooth itself. If it is referred pain, your dentist nearby may still be able to provide pain relief options or they may be able to refer you to the correct specialist to resolve your issue.
How to stop tooth pain fast
Some people may be tempted to try and resolve the problem at home or to see if it ‘resolves itself’, but both of these options can often result in tooth pain becoming more extreme, or underlying issues going untreated.
If you are finding that ‘nothing is helping my tooth pain’ and want to know how to get rid of the tooth pain, the best solution is to immediately book an appointment with your emergency dentist.
Your dentist will be able to examine your mouth, ask about your pain, and determine the cause. Your dentist can also provide immediate pain relief for extreme dental pain to ensure you are comfortable.
Contact our dental practitioner today on (07) 3667 9595 for relief of your tooth pain.
Dental Emergencies – What are they and what should I do?
A dental emergency is one cause of dental pain that we see regularly here at our dentist. Dental emergencies often happen when you least expect them. You might be playing sports, eating a meal at home, or sitting at work. The unpredictable nature of dental emergencies means that many people are surprised and shocked when they happen, and they don’t know what to do.
Our dentist at River City Dental discusses below what constitutes a dental emergency and explains what you should do in a dental emergency to make sure that you protect your teeth and find quick relief for your tooth pain.
Firstly, what is a dental emergency?
There is a lot of confusion surrounding what a dental emergency is. The main factor that defines a dental emergency is that it is urgent and acute in nature. It is often brought about by a specific injury or damage that happens suddenly. However, it’s not always that simple. Sometimes a dental emergency can result from a dental issue that has been progressively becoming worse.
Here is a list of a few types of dental emergencies we commonly treat at our dentist:
- The loss of a tooth through dental trauma
- The sudden loosening or wobbliness of an adult tooth
- Extreme dental pain or toothache
- Bleeding in the mouth
- Dental infections of the teeth or gums
- Chipped or cracked teeth
- Dental abscesses
What to do if my tooth is knocked out?
The best response depends on whether the tooth is a baby tooth or an adult tooth. Our dental professional outlines what to do with adult teeth.
What to do for adult teeth that have been knocked out?
If an adult tooth has been knocked out, remember that it may or may not be able to be put back into the gum and survive as a living tooth. However, there are certain things you can do to increase the likelihood that it can be reinstated.
Make sure that when you touch the lost tooth, you hold it by the crown – the part that usually sticks up above the gumline.
If the tooth is dirty, your dental professional advises you to rinse it in milk or in saline water, but not for a long time – only around 10 seconds at most. If the gum is in good enough condition, it is advised that the person who has lost the tooth place it back in position and hold it there on the way to see their emergency dental specialist. This can be done by hand or by gently closing the teeth together over a soft fabric, such as a shirt.
It is not always possible to place the removed tooth temporarily back into the gum. In these circumstances, your dental specialist advises that you place the tooth in milk or saline water to transport it to the dentist, or if you cannot access these liquids, to place it in a tissue or plastic wrap for transport.
The longer the tooth is detached, the less likely it is that it can be replaced, so your dentist suggests you should contact your closest emergency dentist as soon as possible.
What to do for baby teeth that have been knocked out?
The correct response to baby teeth is slightly different because baby teeth are ultimately meant to be lost, however, not by dental trauma. Dentist advises against placing the tooth back into position, as it may cause damage to the gum or to emerging adult teeth. However, it remains highly important to see your emergency dentist to ensure that no other damage has been done that will affect the healthy development of your child’s adult teeth.
What if my tooth is only damaged, not fully knocked out?
A cracked or chipped tooth still constitutes a dental emergency and calls for an emergency visit to your local dentist to ensure the best outcome in both the short and long-term.
While fragments can’t always be reattached (often cosmetic dentistry solutions such as crowns are a more appropriate fix), the main concern of your dentist will be ensuring that the damaged tooth can remain healthy despite the damage. It is still advised by your dental specialist to store the tooth fragment as you would a fully lost adult tooth as you travel immediately to your closest emergency dental professional for treatment.
What to do in a dental emergency?
If you a suffering from a dental emergency, contact River City Dental immediately for emergency dental in the Indooroopilly, Taringa, Pullenvale, Fig Tree Pocket and Chelmer area. We strive to rearrange our busy schedule to fit you in on the same day for emergency treatment. Call (07) 3667 9595 now to find relief and ensure the best outcome from your dental emergency.
Tooth pain and self-confidence
Tooth pain can make it hard to focus on your day to day life. It can affect your confidence by getting in the way of your ability to before your normal day-to-day activities. On top of this, there is often a connection between tooth pain and tooth aesthetics. Many of the dental problems and issues which cause tooth pain or tooth ache may also result in changes to the appearance of one’s teeth and a loss of self-confidence.
When a person presents at their dentist with tooth pain, the first priority of your denti will always be to relieve that tooth pain so that you feel comfortable again. However, there may also be an opportunity to correct the appearance of your teeth through cosmetic dentistry.
This may be part and parcel of the removal of tooth pain. For example, tooth decay is often visible. A white-coloured filling can both protect the tooth from pain caused by its sensitivity, and also help to make all the teeth look uniformly shaped and white in colour. Wisdom teeth removal can prevent the teeth from crowding. Misaligned teeth or an overbite or underbite that causes pain to your jaw and your teeth can be made to both look and feel better.
For this reason, it makes sense to make your dental visit with the dentist nearby who is able to offer a comprehensive range of services, from cosmetic dentistry, orthodontic dentistry, children’s dentistry, gum health dentistry, general dentistry, dental implant dentist, and emergency dentistry. That way, you can have all of your dental needs and the dental needs of your family attended to in one convenient location.
More about our dental clinic Brisbane
River City Dental provides modern facilities and leading dental technology that uses digital dentistry for precision and best possible care. From onsite parking to a comfortable waiting room, to a gentle and friendly dental team, our service model puts customers first. Contact River City Dental today on (07) 3667 9595, email email@example.com or book online to find relief for your tooth pain.
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