Richmond CA Dentist Explains Common Causes of Tooth Pain

Jun 5th, 2012 | By | Category: General Dentistry, Preventive Dentistry

Gum diseaseToothache is a pain that occurs in the teeth or jaws. In most cases, toothaches are due to problems with the teeth or gums, but sometimes the root cause of the pain originates outside the mouth. Sometimes pain is due to a piece of food or some other object stuck between your teeth, so you should floss gently to determine if that is the issue. If flossing doesn’t relieve your pain, your toothache may be caused by one of the following problems:

  • Cavities. The most common causes of dental pain, cavities are caused by holes in the tooth enamel and/or dentin. Cavities usually do not hurt until they reach the nerve-rich dentin or tooth pulp.
  • Gum disease. The second most common cause of dental pain, gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is characterized by an inflammation of the gum tissue.
  • Sensitive teeth. When tooth enamel is eroded by acidic substances, the underlying layer of the tooth called the dentin is exposed. Dentin is connected to nerves, and therefore will cause pain when exposed to temperature changes or acidic substances such as sugar.
  • Abscesses. If a cavity spreads deep into the pulp, an infection called an abscessed tooth can develop at the tooth root and cause redness and swelling of the gum.
  • Exposed tooth roots. If the gums recede, the tooth roots are no longer protected from a healthy gum and are susceptible to sensitivity and decay, which can cause pain.
  • Cracked tooth. Trauma or decay can cause a tooth to break. If you experience pain from a cracked tooth, the underlying nerves may be damaged.
  • Impaction and eruption. Newly erupting teeth or those that cannot erupt and become impacted can cause significant pain. Wisdom teeth often cause this type of pain in adults.
  • TMJ disorder. One aspect of TMJ dysfunction is a persistent grinding and clenching of the teeth, which wears the teeth down and causes pain in the teeth and jaws.
  • Sinus infection. As your sinuses are located in your upper jawbone, any inflammation in them can affect the nerves of the upper teeth and cause what appears to be a toothache.

If you have a toothache that won’t go away, call Dr. Stefan Moiceanu at (510) 758-7222 to schedule an appointment. Hilltop Family Dental happily treats patients from Richmond, San Pablo, El Sobrante, Vallejo, Pinole, El Cerrito, Hercules, Benicia, and the greater Contra Costa County area.

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