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Is Tooth Pain a Dental Emergency?

HomeDental EmergencyIs Tooth Pain a Dental Emergency?

man holding his jaw with tooth pain

Nobody likes pain, but it isn’t all bad. It tells you that something is wrong, so you can get help. Pain in your teeth can be scary and it isn’t always clear why it’s happening. Here at Edgewater Dental Arts, we offer emergency care for issues that need attention right away. Is tooth pain a dental emergency?

Why Are You Feeling Tooth Pain?

There are four main reasons why you might be feeling pain in your teeth: sensitivity, decay, damage, and gum disease.

1. Tooth Sensitivity

Did you know your teeth are full of nerves? In healthy teeth, a hard layer of enamel protects those nerves. Enamel can start to wear away because of decay or brushing too hard. When your enamel is thin, cold and hot liquids (and even food) irritate the nerves. Depending on how thin your enamel is, that sensitivity can be painful.

If you only experience discomfort after eating or drinking, it’s likely because of thinning enamel. You should make an appointment to see Dr. Cutting soon. Emergency care isn’t necessary if you aren’t in severe pain.

2. Decay

Tooth decay starts small, but as it spreads, it gets into the center of the tooth where all the nerves are. The pain will become steadier and aggravated further by chewing or extreme temperatures. Ignoring toothache can be very serious. Inflammation, extreme sensitivity, infection, and intense pain will follow. This is considered a dental emergency. You can avoid tooth decay by keeping up with preventative care at our office.

3. Damage

Cracks and chips both cause damage to your teeth and can expose the nerves. If the damage is obvious and causing significant pain, it’s a dental emergency. Often, you may not be sure if you have damaged teeth, but there are signs. If you start feeling tooth pain and sensitivity while chewing, minor tooth damage could explain the pain. Contact us as soon as you can, so we can identify what’s going on.

4. Gum Disease

Gum disease can cause tooth pain. When you don’t care for your gums, bacteria spread. Your gums become swollen, inflamed, and even infected. Your teeth will suffer, too. If you’re experiencing symptoms of gum disease, make an appointment to see us soon. Mild symptoms of gum disease don’t usually need emergency care unless you’re also in a lot of pain.

Come to Edgewater Dental Arts for Your Dental Needs

If your tooth hurts, you don’t necessarily need emergency care. However, severe pain means you should get in touch with us. Even if your tooth pain is infrequent and more annoying than anything else, come to our Edgewater dental office. We can figure out what the problem is and get you on your way to great oral health!

Written by

John Cutting, DMD is an Annapolis dentist experienced in all aspects of dentistry. He provides complete care from general dentistry to cosmetic and restorative dentistry in his conveniently located and comfortable office, Edgewater Dental Arts.