A toothache (or painful tooth) is a common yet highly disruptive dental problem. In fact, a severe toothache can make it difficult to eat, sleep and even concentrate. While you may interpret your tooth pain as a cavity, there are other reasons that cause a tooth to throb, ache or twinge with pain. Here are some of the most common culprits to tooth pain in adults:
#1 Tooth Decay
A cavity is not painful until the decay penetrates the outer enamel and enters the inner tooth pulp, where sensitive nerves reside. Tooth decay is a likely reason for your dental pain if you have skipped your routine dental visits or avoided cavity repair.
A sensitive tooth can feel different than a constant throbbing or dull ache. When a tooth is sensitive, patients typically experiences a sudden jolt of sharp pain when eating or drinking
hot or cold foods and liquids. Tooth sensitivity can be an indication of enamel erosion, receding gums or inflammation in the inner pulp tissues of the tooth.
When the enamel or gums that surround and protect a tooth become injured or compromised, tooth pain can result. Such damage can occur from bruxism, an oral habit that involves grinding or clenching of the teeth. In such cases, more than one tooth is commonly affected.
#4 Cracked Tooth
A cracked tooth can vary widely in severity. Some are noticeable and painful, while others are inconspicuous and asymptomatic. However, when the fracture is underneath the gum line, tooth pain can exist when you bite down or put extra pressure on the injured tooth.
#5 Gum Disease
While gingivitis does not typically cause tooth pain, if it is left untreated, the gums can become irritated and infected enough to trigger discomfort. Periodontitis, an advanced form of gum disease, is characterized by gums that pull away from your tooth roots and the destruction of the underlying bone that supports your teeth.
An Emergency Dentist in New York
At Park South Dentistry, we are always here to answer your urgent and unexpected dental concerns. If you have a toothache that is persistent or worsening, please give us a call. Our office is open for emergency dental appointments. A healthy smile is a comfortable smile!