A healthy smile shouldn’t hurt. Teeth do not have exposed nerves, so under normal circumstances, they are not painful. There are times, however, when people may experience sudden Mouth Pain. This pain may radiate from the gum tissue or a tooth, depending on the cause. While not all sources of pain are deemed a dental emergency, there are many warning signs that indicate a trip to the dentist is in order.
Lump Around a Tooth
The gum tissue surrounding each tooth is normally bright pink and flat. If a painful lump forms on the gum tissue, it is usually the result of an infection. These lumps are actually puss-filled pockets called abscesses. They form whenever a tooth becomes compromised by decay. If bacteria reaches the nerve of the tooth, the patient will feel severe pain. An abscessed tooth is considered a dental emergency. The dentist will first treat the infection with antibiotics, and either a root canal or tooth extraction will be recommended.
Hurts to Chew
Some patients visit their dentist because of pain when chewing or speaking. If the dentist doesn’t find a problem with the patient’s teeth, the Mouth Pain may be the result of a disorder of the jaw. The joint of the jaw is cushioned by a small pad of cartilage. If this cartilage cushion becomes damaged or dislodged, the patient may find it difficult to fully open their mouth. They may also complain of constant, throbbing pain. Jaw disorders are often treated with a mouth guard that is designed to be worn at night to prevent tooth grinding. More serious cases may need surgery to repair the joint.
Can’t Handle Cold
It is also common for patients to complain of pain whenever their teeth are exposed to cold food or drinks. If the teeth are otherwise healthy, the patient is most likely suffering from tooth sensitivity. This usually occurs whenever the gum tissue recedes, exposing the nerve-filled dentin. Most cases of tooth sensitivity get better over time. In order to prevent pain, a dentist may suggest the patient uses a special toothpaste made for sensitive teeth.
Anyone experiencing mouth or tooth pain should schedule a dental examination to rule out serious problems. Many cases of pain are treatable with conservative methods, while others require specialized dental procedures. Visit Alamoanadental.com to learn more about other causes of dental pain.
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