So you’ve got a toothache, chances are you’ve already scheduled a visit with your dentist but now you want to know what caused it. Well there are several factors that lead to painful toothache and there might be some habits you want to change to prevent this happening again.

What Causes a Toothache?

woman with toothacheTooth decay is the lead cause for a toothache. Tooth decay is caused when the buildup of plaque on teeth promotes the growth of bacteria. This bacteria creates acids which can erode the enamel of a tooth causing infection and pain. Plaque buildup is typically a symptom of consuming a high sugar diet as well as a poor home regimen. That’s why it is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss regularly.

Outside of tooth decay there are several reasons why you might have a toothache. Some of which tooth decay plays a factor. The reasons are as follows,

  • Infection
  • Gum disease
  • Grinding teeth (bruxism)
  • Tooth trauma
  • An abnormal bite
  • Tooth eruption (in babies and school-age children)

Your teeth may also ache if you suffer from sinus or ear infection, however these symptoms are often accompanied by a splitting headache.
If you have a toothache you may also be suffering from a cavity or gum disease. If you feel discomfort eating overly sweet food then this a good indication that you have a cavity.

Symptoms of a Toothache

Because a toothache may be caused by a number of ailments it is important to identify secondary symptoms. If you notice pus near the site of your tooth pain this is an indicator of an abscess and you should contact your dentist immediately. If you are experiencing fever, difficulty breathing, swelling around the tooth area, or a foul tasting discharge these could be symptoms of a greater problem and you should contact your dentist as soon as possible.

Before Visiting the Dentist

Before you meet with you dentist you may be experiencing a high level of pain. Here are some ways to alleviate your pain before meeting with the dentist.

  • Rinse your mouth with salt water
  • Gently floss to remove any trapped food or plaque buildup
  • Take a small dose of aspirin or ibuprofen
  • Apply a cold compress to your jaw or surrounding tooth area

Toothaches are serious business and could be symptomatic of a larger problem. Contact us today to schedule an appointment to remedy the situation.