Why Does My Tooth Hurt?

Discover What May Be Causing Your Toothache

A toothache is no fun at all and can even be scary when you don’t know what is causing it. A toothache is described as any pain, soreness, or ache in and/or around a tooth. The tooth may be sensitive to temperature, painful when chewing or biting, sensitive to sweets, or it may even have a sharp pain or dull ache.

Diagnosing the Problem

Your dentist has several methods that he will use to determine the cause of the tooth pain. First, he will ask you several questions
regarding the types of symptoms you are having. Is it sensitive to cold or heat? Does it hurt to eat? Has it woken you up in the middle of the night? These questions will help your dentist narrow down the possible causes for your discomfort. Your dentist may also want to take an X-ray of the bothersome tooth to check for abscesses, cavities, or any other hidden problems. There are other tests a dentist sometimes performs to help diagnose a toothache. Such tests include a percussion test where the dentist will gently tap on areas of the tooth or surrounding teeth to help identify the precise location of the pain. A biting pressure test, using a “biting stick” or cotton tip applicator, may be used to determine what area of the tooth is causing the pain. The cold air test uses a gentle stream of cold air
blown directly on the different areas of the tooth to figure out where the sensitivity is coming from. Once your dentist has diagnosed the cause of your toothache, they will explain to you what is involved in fixing the problem. It’s also possible that they will prescribe medication to help alleviate the symptoms in the meantime. In cases of severe pain, it is often difficult to determine the exact cause. Of course, if left untreated, your symptoms will only worsen over time.

The Most Common Causes of Toothaches

Among all the things that might cause a toothache, the most common are tooth decay, inflammation, an abscess, a cracked or impacted
tooth, gum disease, and sensitive teeth. At times, the problem may not be related to your dental health at all. Let’s look at each of these
individually.

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Dr. Deepak Dawar

BDS , 14+ years experience

Dentist , Implantologist , Cosmetic/Aesthetic Dentist