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Toothaches: What Causes them and How to Avoid Them

What is a Toothache

A toothache is a common dental issue that many people experience during their lives. It presents itself in several ways, but occurs most commonly as either a dull throbbing or sharp pain. Irrespective of the type of pain you experience, a toothache is an irritating ailment that shows there is a problem with your oral health.

In a nutshell, a toothache refers to pain felt inside or around a tooth. The pain may be acute, lingering, or pulsating. Swollen gums frequently indicate cavities. Furthermore, if your tooth only hurts when you apply a little pressure on it, it is indicative of a toothache. In some cases, toothaches are accompanied by fevers, headaches, and a foul-tasting drainage from infected teeth.

Even the mildest toothache can become quite disruptive to your daily life. It can prevent you from eating or even sleeping. Since a toothache is a symptom and not a disease, you need to visit a dentist immediately you experience any pain or persistent discomfort.

Causes of Toothaches

You should never make assumptions about the cause of your toothache. This is because a lot of different things could be causing it. Do not automatically assume that cavities cause your pain. While tooth decay remains the most common cause, there are, however, a lot more possibilities to consider including the following:

  • An abscessed tooth
  • Tooth fracture
  • A damaged filling
  • Infected gums
  • Repetitive motions like bruxism (grinding teeth)
  • Teeth eruption, especially in young children
  • Making unusual bites

Preventing Toothaches

Tooth decay causes most toothaches. Therefore, following a consistent oral hygiene regimen can go a long way to prevent occurrences. Good oral hygiene practices include:

  • Brushing your teeth every day using a fluoride-containing toothpaste.
  • Flossing after every meal.
  • Rinsing your mouth immediately after eating using clean water or an antiseptic mouthwash – especially after taking lunch.

Tooth decay can also be caused by excessive consumption of sugary foods and snacks. Therefore, avoid indulging in soda, cut down your sugar intake, and consume healthy foods rich in vitamins and minerals like calcium.

Scheduling a Teeth Cleaning

You also need to schedule regular visits to a dentist for routine oral check-ups and teeth cleaning appointments. Dental issues like gum disease and other conditions invade silently and present themselves in different forms including toothaches. Your dentist will arrest and treat any dental problems as soon as they arise, so schedule your next appointment today.