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Why Do My Teeth Hurt?

Tooth pain can vary in intensity depending on the source of the pain and the length of time you’ve endured it.

Perhaps you experience occasional sensitivity when you’re exposed to very hot or cold temperatures. Maybe it’s sharp pain when you chew or bite your food or worst of all a constant pain.

No matter how intense the pain is, no one should be putting up with tooth or gum ache. If you often struggle with toothaches, or know someone who does, read on to see if you can identify the cause of the ache and work out how to deal with it!


Tooth Decay

“My tooth hurts when I eat!” you wail as you gingerly nibble on your toast. A common cause of sore teeth, particularly when eating, is tooth decay.

Surrounding healthy teeth is a hard outer layer of enamel to protect sensitive nerves inside. If your tooth decays, the enamel wears away, exposing the nerves, causing sensitivity and pain.

Decay is caused when plaque sticks to the enamel, feeding on food particles, producing acid which wears away the enamel.

Pulpitis and Abscesses

If you have severely throbbing teeth, you may have tooth decay that has progressed to ‘pulpitis’.

This is when the tooth pulp becomes inflamed, generating pressure on the surrounding tissue.

Left untreated, it can lead to abscesses, where the pulp chamber becomes infected. Pus builds up and tries to drain out of the tooth root tip.

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s crucial to see your dentist. The infection can spread to your gums and bone.


Gum Disease

Additional to tooth decay, your gums can become infected and deteriorate, causing intense gum ache and tooth pain.

When the gums become diseased, they recede from the teeth, leaving gaps which fill with bacteria, exposing your tooth roots to decay. Your teeth become sensitive to temperature and touch.

Cracked Tooth

You may experience sensitivity or pain if you crack your tooth.

You might crack your tooth with pressure over time from biting and chewing on hard foodstuffs, or perhaps during an injury to your face and mouth area.

It’s best to get this checked out by your dentist so you’re not exposed to further damage or decay.


Impacted Tooth

Jaw, tooth and gum ache can also be the result of an impacted tooth, where a tooth is unable to move into its proper position, blocked by other teeth.

The tooth becomes stuck under the gum, trying to push its way up, creating a great deal of pressure and ultimately a lot of mouth pain.

This is most common with your wisdom teeth which are usually the last to push through.

Recent Work Done

You might be thinking to yourself, “I’ve just been to the dentist and now my teeth hurt. What causes sensitive teeth all of a sudden?”

If you’re experiencing tooth pain and you’ve recently been to the dentist, this might actually have caused your sensitivity.

Recent deep cleaning, a new filling, or whitening treatments may make your mouth feel sensitive for a few days or weeks.

If your pain progresses past a dull ache or slight sensitivity, you should consult your dentist.


Referred Pain

Your pain may not be caused by disease within your mouth. It could the result of pain from an external pain point, known as ‘referred pain’.

You might have had a migraine which has put strain on the muscles in your face and jaw, ultimately causing tooth pain.

Alternatively, you may be experiencing stress and grind your teeth, asleep or awake. If you grind your teeth, the enamel can wear away. Your mouth and teeth will feel achy.

Stress toothache is common but easily treatable by just relaxing!


As well as referred pain, other non-oral health issues may cause your tooth pain. Your sinuses can be linked to tooth pain.

Above your upper teeth are your sinus cavities. When you develop sinusitis, pressure is put directly on your teeth. When you move your head, tilting it or bending forward, your tooth pain will worsen if this is the cause.


Tooth Pain Doing Your Head In?

If you’re experiencing tooth pain, don’t sit in silence and suffer – get it checked by your dentist!

It may be nothing to worry about, but it could be the beginning of a severe infection, either way — addressing it is essential.

If you go to the dentist regularly and make sure to come in as soon as the pain kicks in chances are we can catch problems early on. The earlier you can catch a problem or an upcoming problem the quicker and more painless it’ll be to deal with.

To arrange a consultation, contact Buttercup 7 Day Dental today or book your appointment online.

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