Toothache refers to the pain felt in and around the tooth. It can be caused by:
- tooth decay
- infected gums
- tooth fracture
- grinding teeth
- abscessed tooth
- damaged filling
This can really be bothersome, as many people would agree that toothache is much worse than headache or stomachache. It's something that you would really find hard to bear.
Symptoms of this condition include:
- swelling around the tooth
- foul-tasting drainage coming from the infected tooth
- sharp, throbbing pain that's constantly felt and reverberating on the tooth and other nearby teeth
It's important that you see your dentist about your toothache, especially if:
- if it has been bothering you longer than one or two days
- if the toothache is severe and the pain is unbearable
- if there is a fever, earache or pain whenever you open your mouth wide
Detection of Dental Infections
Detection and treatment of dental infections causing the toothache is a must to prevent spread to the other teeth and part of the head.
When you go to your dentist:
- He/she will first get your medical history and perform a physical exam.
- You will be asked questions regarding the pain such as when it started, how severe it is, and what aggravates the symptoms.
- The dentist will also examine the inside of your mouth including teeth, gums, jaws, tongue, throat, sinuses, ears, nose, and neck.
- He/she may conduct an X-ray test along with other tests to find out what's causing your toothache.
Treating toothache problem depends on the cause.
If it is caused by cavity, then your dentist will fill the cavity or extract the tooth, whichever of two is the more suitable option.
- root canal
It's also possible that the dentist will perform a root canal if the cause of the tooth ache is an infection of the tooth nerve. If the tooth nerve is infected, this means that the bacteria have invaded the inner parts of the tooth. You may also be given an antibiotic if you have fever or if your jaw is swollen.
- pain/inflammation relief
Phototherapy with the use of cold laser may also be used for the reduction of pain and inflammation.
To prevent toothache, it's imperative to follow good oral hygiene practices. These include:
- flossing once daily
- brushing regularly with fluoride toothpaste
- getting professional cleaning from the dentist at least once a year.
- healthy diet
In addition to these, it would also help a lot if you don't indulge in foods that are too sweet. Candies, chocolates, and sugary beverages can contribute to toothache. If you want to eat something sweet, it would be better to rely on naturally sweet foods like fruits, which are loaded with nutrients that can help the teeth stay in top shape.
All these measures can help prevent toothache.