Tooth pain is usually something we don’t think about until we are experiencing that unwanted sharp pain that irritates our teeth. But, how do you know where this pain is even coming from in the first place? Well, there can be many different causes for why your teeth hurt aside from the most obvious issue, a cavity. It’s important to pinpoint where your pain is coming from in your mouth and what type of pain you are experiencing in order to get on the road to finding relief for your tooth pain. Here are the most likely causes of tooth pain along with the next steps you can take to find relief from your teeth hurting.
1. You grind your teeth during sleep.
Grinding your teeth is actually a quite common issue that most people face, especially during sleep. This can be brought on by a wide variety of different causes such as stress, an imbalance in your bite, or other common sleep disorders. While this condition can range from just being an annoyance to seriously damaging your teeth, you should have this examined by your dentist in order to prevent future problems. You will most likely feel a dull pain in your teeth or a headache from grinding your teeth during sleep. The bottom line is that grinding your teeth consistently can cause a great deal of pain and pressure to your teeth.
2. You have a damaged tooth.
Damaged teeth can happen when you least expect it from biting into something or accidentally getting hit in the face. This can cause a sharp pain in your tooth and cause sensitivity each time you bite down and chew. If the crack happens to be deep, this can lead to even more issues allowing bacteria to get into the deep cracks of your teeth leading to potential infection or abscess. It is important to examine and identify whether you have a tooth that is cracked or causing a significant amount of pain that could be caused by an infection. You should seek advice from your dentist in order to prevent your tooth from further cracking and to save the tooth that is currently there.
3. Your teeth are sensitive.
Normal, healthy teeth are protected by a layer of enamel that serves as a protective barrier for the nerves inside of your teeth. As you get older, this layer can wear away over time and not be as protective as it once was. This can cause anything you eat or drink to potentially reach the nerve endings in your teeth which leads to tooth sensitivity or pain. This most commonly occurs when eating or drinking something very hot or very cold that leads to a sharp pain that lasts for a few seconds.
4. You have a gum infection.
While it’s dreadful to hear that you have a gum infection or periodontal (gum) disease, you are certainly not alone in suffering from this condition. This can occur when bacteria or other germs enter your gums and begin to quickly spread to a point where your body is not able to fight off the bad bacteria by itself. This infection can cause tooth pain and swelling of your gums that can be quite painful. It is important to catch gum disease in the early stages in order to prevent it from spreading and getting worse.
5. You’re brushing too hard.
Yes, there is such a thing as brushing your teeth too hard even when you think you are doing your teeth a service by getting them as clean as possible. In reality, it’s not beneficial to your teeth if you are brushing aggressively or with too much pressure. It can begin to wear away at your tooth structure and can cause gum recession. It is better to brush your teeth with a soft bristled brush to reduce the amount of pressure applies while you brush.
Finding Relief for Your Tooth Pain
If your tooth pain is to the point where you have to make an appointment for the dentist, it is important to minimize your tooth pain while waiting for your appointment. There are many different home remedies that you can try to eliminate or lessen your tooth pain prior to your appointment. A few of these at-home remedies include:
- Saltwater rinse
- Over the counter pain medication like Advil or Tylenol
- Ice pack
- Pain relieving gels
Dr. Cory Fortson, DDS began his educational journey by earning a BS in Nutritional Science from Michigan State University. He is a 2014 graduate of The University of Detroit Dental School and a third generation dentist who is proud to provide excellent dental care to the Lathrup Village community.
With his dedication to excellence and continued growth, Dr. Fortson has completed extensive continuing education courses in orthodontics (braces and Invisalign), endodontics (root canal therapy), and cosmetic dentistry. He always strives to create a comfortable atmosphere for his patients while restoring their smiles. Dr. Fortson’s goal is to take the stress out of dental visits by meeting all his patients’ dental needs while offering the most up to date painless treatment options to deliver a beautiful smile.