Norwood Dental

Toothache can be an excruciating experience, both physically and emotionally. However, you’re not alone in this struggle, as millions worldwide suffer from this common dental issue. That’s why we’ve created a comprehensive guide to help you better understand Toothache Causes, Symptoms, Prevention & Risks. By exploring the symptoms, causes, and preventive measures of toothache, you can protect your teeth and avoid the potential risks associated with untreated dental problems.

Toothache can be triggered by various factors, including cavities, gum disease, dental trauma, and sinus infections. But the good news is that there are plenty of ways to prevent toothache and maintain good dental health.

By regularly brushing and flossing, avoiding sugary and acidic foods and beverages, and scheduling regular check-ups with your dentist, you can safeguard your teeth and prevent the risks associated with toothache. Let’s dive in and learn about Toothache Causes, Symptoms, Prevention & Risks.

What is Toothache?

Toothache can start with a small, subtle ache that can escalate and dominate one’s thoughts. It is caused by various factors, from simple cavities to complex problems like impacted wisdom teeth.

Toothache is a reminder to care for dental health by brushing and flossing regularly and visiting your dentist for check-ups and cleanings. Maintaining good dental hygiene can prevent future toothaches and help achieve a healthy, pain-free smile.

Why Does Tooth Pain Come and Go?

Tooth pain that comes and goes can have several causes, such as tooth decay, gum disease, tooth sensitivity, and teeth grinding. The pain may vary depending on certain factors.

Addressing the root toothache cause is crucial for maintaining good dental health. Regular dentist visits and good oral hygiene habits can help alleviate and prevent recurring tooth pain.

Toothache Causes

Toothache Causes female have toothache

A variety of factors, including tooth decay, gum disease, dental trauma, and dental abscesses, can cause toothache. If you’re having toothache at night, it might be because of other reasons, such as sinus infections, bruxism, and stress. Identifying the underlying cause of your toothache is essential for effective treatment and long-term dental health.

Tooth Decay

One of the primary toothache cause is tooth decay. Cavities can form when bacteria in the mouth produce acids that erode the tooth enamel, leading to toothache.

Gum Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, can cause toothache when the gums become inflamed and infected. If not addressed, gum disease can result in the loss of teeth.

Dental Trauma

Dental trauma, such as a cracked or chipped tooth, can cause toothache. In some cases, trauma can also cause the tooth to become loose or dislodged.

Tooth Abscess

A tooth abscess is a collection of pus that forms in the tooth or gums, usually as a result of bacterial infection. Abscesses can cause severe pain, swelling, and even fever.

Sinus Infection

A sinus infection can cause toothache in the upper teeth. Because the sinuses and teeth share nerve pathways, pain can be referred from the sinuses to the teeth.

Teeth Grinding

Grinding or clenching the teeth can cause toothache, particularly in the jaw and surrounding muscles.

Can Stress Cause Toothache?

Yes, stress can cause toothache by leading to teeth grinding, which can cause pain and sensitivity in the teeth and surrounding muscles. Among the various toothache causes, stress is certainly one of them.

Additionally, stress can weaken the immune system, making it more difficult for the body to fight off infections that can cause toothache, such as gum disease or dental abscesses.

Toothache – Symptoms

Toothache Symptoms man complaining about toothache

Sharp Pain

The most common symptom of toothache is a sharp, throbbing pain in the affected tooth or surrounding area. The pain can be continuous or come and go, and it can range from mild to severe.

Sensitivity to Hot and Cold Temperatures

Toothache can cause sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, making eating or drinking certain foods and beverages painful.

Swelling of the Gums or Face

In some cases, a toothache can cause swelling of the gums or face. That can be a sign of infection or abscess.

Pain When Biting or Chewing

Toothache can cause pain when biting or chewing, particularly if the affected tooth is decayed or damaged.

Fever or Headache

Sometimes, a toothache can cause fever or headache, which may indicate a more serious dental problem.

Bad Breath or Foul Taste in the Mouth

Toothache can cause bad breath or a foul taste in the mouth, mainly if an infection or abscess is present.

Can Toothache be Treated with Home Remedies?

Toothache Home Remedies woman rinses her mouth

Home remedies like warm salt water rinse, cold compress, pain medications, and natural treatments such as clove oil or garlic paste can temporarily relieve toothaches. However, visiting a dentist is crucial to address the root cause and prevent further damage. Home remedies should not replace professional dental treatment.

To get temporary relief from toothache, you can try the following home remedies:

  • Rinse your mouth with warm saltwater to loosen debris, disinfect, and reduce inflammation. Mix ½ teaspoon of salt with warm water, swish, and spit.
  • Rinse your mouth with hydrogen peroxide (3% solution) diluted with water to reduce inflammation and pain. Don’t swallow it.
  • Apply a cold compress to the painful area for 20 minutes every few hours to reduce swelling and pain.
  • Take over-the-counter pain medications like NSAIDs (aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen) or acetaminophen to reduce pain and inflammation. However, don’t give aspirin to children under 16; use Tylenol instead.

Some natural or herbal treatments for toothache include:

  • Clove oil possesses natural antiseptic properties that can effectively numb pain and decrease inflammation. Apply a small amount of clove oil on a cotton ball and place it on the painful area, or rinse your mouth with a drop of clove oil diluted in water.
  • Vanilla extract contains alcohol that can temporarily numb pain and antioxidants that help with healing. Apply the extract to the tooth and gum using your fingertips or a cotton ball a few times daily.
  • Peppermint tea has soothing properties, so it can be used to bring about relief to painful areas with a cooled-down tea bag. Hold the tea bag against the tooth and gum.
  • Garlic can kill bacteria and relieve pain due to the antimicrobial allicin it contains. You can make a paste by crushing a garlic clove and applying it to the affected area.

How will the Dentist Treat My Toothache?

Dentist Treat My Toothache

  • The appropriate treatment for toothache will vary depending on the root cause of the pain.
  • If the toothache is due to tooth decay, the dentist may need to remove the decayed area and fill the cavity with a dental filling.
  • If an infection causes toothache, the dentist may need to perform a root canal or extraction to remove the infected tissue and prevent the infection from spreading.
  • If the toothache is related to gum disease, the dentist may need to perform a deep cleaning or recommend other periodontal treatments.
  • During your dental visit, the dentist will also evaluate the overall health of your teeth and gums to identify any other potential dental problems.
  • They may take X-rays or other imaging tests to closely examine your teeth and jawbone.
  • In addition to treating the underlying cause of your toothache, the dentist may provide you with pain relief medications or recommend home remedies such as cold compresses or warm salt water rinses to help manage your symptoms.
  • It’s important to see a dentist as soon as possible if you are experiencing a toothache, as delaying treatment can lead to more serious dental problems and complications.

How Long Does a Toothache Last Without Treatment?

If left untreated, the duration of a toothache can vary depending on the underlying cause. Sometimes, a mild toothache may go away within a few hours or days, while a more severe toothache may persist for several weeks or months.

However, delaying treatment for a toothache can lead to more serious dental problems and complications such as infection, abscess, or tooth loss. Early intervention by seeing a dentist can help prevent the need for more extensive and costly dental treatments.

Toothache – Prevention

  • Practice good oral hygiene by brushing your teeth twice daily and flossing once daily to remove plaque and food debris that can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Use fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash to help strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities.
  • Avoid or limit sugary and acidic foods and drinks that can damage tooth enamel and increase the risk of tooth decay.
  • Drink plenty of water to help flush away bacteria and food particles from your mouth.
  • Chew sugar-free gum after meals to help stimulate saliva flow, neutralizing acids and promoting tooth remineralization.
  • Wear a mouthguard during high-impact sports or activities that could result in a dental injury.
  • Quit smoking or using tobacco products, as they can increase the risk of gum disease and tooth loss.
  • Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups and professional cleanings to detect and treat any dental issues before they become more serious.

When Should I Consult a Dentist for Toothache?

woman with Dentist for Toothache

  • The pain is severe and does not go away after several hours.
  • The pain is accompanied by swelling, fever, or a foul taste in your mouth.
  • You are experiencing difficulty in opening your mouth or swallowing.
  • You have a history of dental problems, such as cavities, gum disease, or tooth abscesses.
  • You have recently had dental work done, such as a filling or extraction, and are experiencing pain or discomfort.
  • The pain interferes with your daily activities, such as eating or speaking.
  • You have a persistent or recurring toothache, even after trying home remedies or over-the-counter pain medications.

Does Toothache Affect Life?

Toothache can significantly impact one’s life by causing difficulty in eating and drinking, disrupting sleep patterns, causing emotional distress, and leading to financial strain. Seeking proper dental treatment immediately is essential to alleviate pain and prevent further complications.

When is Toothache an Emergency?

woman suffering from Emergency toothache

It is essential to seek emergency treatment right away when you’re experiencing toothache with symptoms such as:

  • Chest pain.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Lightheadedness.
  • Other signs of a heart attack.
  • Persistent cough, coughing up blood.
  • Difficulty breathing and swallowing.
  • Swelling in your jaw or face indicates a spreading tooth infection.

Don’t Let Toothache Ruin Your Day – Reach Out to Norwood Dental for Expert Assistance!

After exploring the various facets of toothache causes, it becomes clear that if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, you’re indeed grappling with toothache discomfort. Contact Norwood Dental Today for expert care. The dental team of Norwood Dental, with Dr. Brandon Bussler and Dr. Dan Ross, is delighted to help alleviate your toothache. You can contact us by filling out your details in the form. You can call us at 952.467.3518 or email us at