Could your toothache be something more serious?

Could your toothache be something more serious?

Many patients may dismiss a toothache, pop a few aspirin or ibuprofen and wait for some relief. However, this may be a mistake in some cases, when a toothache is really a symptom of a more serious dental problem. A toothache should never be ignored.

If you are experiencing a toothache or some other type of facial pain, such as jaw pain, you should be examined by a dentist in a timely fashion.

Postponing treatment for too long could cause the problem to progress, and it could eventually warrant an invasive intervention including some type of oral surgery, such as a root canal or tooth extraction. Additionally, tooth or facial pain may indicate some other type of problem, such as a sinus infection or even a heart attack.

The nature of the toothache gives the dentist important clues to the cause of the problem, so you should be prepared to describe your discomfort in detail.

Discomfort at the rear of the mouth may indicate an issue with impacted wisdom teeth, in which case your dentist likely would refer you to an oral surgeon for evaluation and possible extraction.

A sharp, shooting pain can suggest increased sensitivity, which may be due to decay, an abscess or gum disease, among other factors. A throbbing pain is often associated with an abscess or some other infection.

Chronic tooth pain, on the other hand, is often a symptom of bruxism, or teeth grinding or clenching. Advanced decay that has reached the nerve in the tooth’s inner core may also be the cause of persistent pain.

After the dentist has determined what is causing your toothache, an intervention can be recommended. It may involve consultation with another specialist, like an oral surgeon or periodontist, to address the problem.

Never ignore a toothache, because it often does alert you to a more serious oral health problem or even a condition elsewhere in the body.

Contact Charlottesville Oral Surgery and Dental Implant Center as soon as possible to pursue the most appropriate course of treatment for the cause of your toothache. Call 434-295-0911 for an immediate appointment.