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How to Alleviate Your Toothache

woman nice smile with eyes closedA toothache occurs due to inflammation of the middle part of the tooth called pulp. The pulp contains nerve endings that are highly sensitive to pain. Inflammation to the pulp may have several causes. These include dental cavities, trauma, teeth grinding and infection.

Typical Toothache Symptoms

At Artarmon Dentists, we often see patients with toothache and jaw pain. These individuals may experience pressure or severe pain. As the area of inflammation grows, the pain becomes more intense. It may spread to the cheek, the ear or the jaw. If you experience any of the following, you should seek prompt dental care to address your toothache:

  • Pain when chewing
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold foods or drinks
  • Bleeding or secretion from around a tooth or the gums
  • Swelling around a tooth or swelling of your jaw
  • Injury or trauma to the area

These symptoms sometimes accompany dental decay, tooth fracture, or gum disease (periodontal disease). Dental decay or an area of redness surrounding the tooth’s gum line may point to the source of pain.

Home Care Tips

Until you can get into the practice for your toothache, you can take over-the-counter pain medication as directed. If you don’t want to take medicine, you can place a cold compress on the cheek outside the affected area. You also can rinse your mouth with warm salt water. Add one teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm (not hot) water. Rinse your mouth several times with the solution and spit it out.
If you have a toothache, we want to get you out of pain as quickly as possible. Contact our practice straightaway to get the prompt care you need.

When to See a Dentist

An infection

If you have pain associated with swelling of the gums or face, or you have discharge around a tooth, it’s crucial that you seek care straightaway. Fever is a telltale sign of infection in dental disease. These signs may indicate an infection surrounding the tooth, the gum, or the jawbone. It’s important to note that simple dental decay (caries) does not cause fever.

An abscess

Fever and facial swelling may indicate that you have an abscessed tooth. Dental abscesses may require antibiotics and drainage. When it’s advisable for this procedure to be performed inside the tooth, your dentist will perform a root canal.

A broken or knocked-out tooth

If a child’s permanent tooth is knocked out, attempt to gently rinse off any dirt or debris and re-implant it as quickly as possible. Then seek dental care immediately. If you are not able to position the tooth back in place, then put it in a small cup of milk or even water and bring it to the office.

* Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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