Toothache is the pain experienced in and around the teeth, jaws or the surrounding tissues. It can be present continuously or may come and go. The intensity of the pain can range from mild to severe. Toothache can sometimes be severe enough to affect day to day function. Therefore, proper intervention is necessary.
Some of the symptoms which are commonly associated with toothache include:
There are multiple causes for toothache out of which tooth decay is the leading cause in both adults and children. The bacteria in the mouth interact with the food remnants and release acids. These acids attack the enamel coating on the teeth and cause them to decay producing a cavity or hole. Tooth decay causes pain when sweets or very hot or very cold foods are consumed. The other causes of toothache include:
Sinus infections can also produce pain that radiates to the tooth.
Toothache can occur in people of any age group. The following factors increase the likelihood of a person to develop a toothache:
When to consult the doctor?
If the toothache is persistent for more than one or two days or if it is very severe, then consult a dentist. Seek immediate help if the following symptoms are present along with toothache:
The dentist will perform a physical examination of the oral cavity and may order for x-rays to determine the exact cause of toothache.
Usually, pain medications are sufficient to relieve toothache. Over-the-counter (OTC) pain killers such as aspirin can be taken by adults to reduce the pain. Benzocaine containing OTC gels and liquids should be used cautiously. In some cases, special treatment is required which include:
The following home remedies can help to manage a toothache:
However, pregnant women should check with the dentist before using some of the above home remedies.
Toothache can be prevented to a large extent by the following measures:
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