Pain in a tooth can be nothing more than a sensitivity reaction to heat or cold, or it can be a sign of more serious dental issue. If you are experiencing moderate to severe pain in one or more teeth, it is critical you seek out the services of a dentist to have the situation properly evaluated. Pain in a tooth may be addressed in many different ways.
Sensitive Teeth, or Something More Severe?
If your teeth are overly sensitive, using a toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth may help reduce the sensitivity. Sometimes, pain in a tooth may the cause of a cavity, which can be addressed with a dental filling. However, when the problem is more severe, and the tooth cannot be saved due to severe infection, or damage, the dentist may perform an extraction to remove the tooth and allow the underlying and surrounding bone and tissues to heal.
Before the dentist removes the affected tooth, a local numbing agent is injected into the surrounding gum tissue. The numbing agent will take 15-20 minutes to begin working and will allow the dentist to remove the tooth with little or no discomfort during the procedure. The numbing agent will numb the gums and tissues holding the tooth in place, and eventually reach the nerve descending out of the tooth. After the procedure when the numbing agent had fully worn off, the area may still be sensitive for a day or so, but will improve with time and healing.
What to Expect from Wisdom Tooth Extractions
More advanced dental extraction procedures, like those involving the removal of wisdom teeth in the back of the mouth, may require deeper sedation in addition to local sedation, especially if the wisdom are impacted. The postoperative care for wisdom tooth removal is critical to follow to avoid dislodging the protective blood clot that will encourage healing and avoid a painful condition called a “dry socket” which can expose sensitive nerves causing moderate to severe pain.
When recovering from a wisdom tooth extraction, it is important to avoid smoking or using smokeless tobacco, vaping, rinsing out your mouth briskly, sucking or drinking from a straw until the area has fully healed. Very gently rinsing your mouth with warm salt water twice a day will promote healing and eating soft, cold foods with aid with the reduction of swelling.
Regular Checkups Can Prevent Extractions
Tooth extractions can be avoided in many cases with proper oral hygiene and routine dental checkups. Catching small issues, such as cavities, before they grow into more severe dental problems is a great way to avoid having to remove a tooth. Sometimes, in the case of an injury or trauma to the face or mouth, damage to a tooth can be severe enough to require an extraction.
Don’t Put Off a Visit to the Dentist
If you are experiencing moderate to severe pain in one or more teeth, it may be a sign of a more severe dental problem. The sooner you have the situation evaluated, the sooner the dentist can develop a treatment plan to save the tooth or prevent further infection and pain from a tooth that needs to be removed.
Dr. Kevin Hogan is restorative and cosmetic dentist in Mount Pleasant, SC with over 40 years of experience treating patients. He utilizes the most advanced technologies and treatments and offers oral conscious sedation dentistry for his patients who suffer from dental anxiety. If you are experiencing tooth pain, call his office today to schedule an appointment for a consultation and recommended treatment plan.
Call for an Appointment
If you are ready to explore ways to rejuvenate your smile, or you just need a cleaning and x-rays, call today for a free consultation or to schedule an appointment. Dr. Kevin Hogan graduated from the Indiana University School of Dentistry and has over 40 years of experience. He completed continuing education at the prestigious Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies, a world-renowned comprehensive and aesthetic dentistry center. He has also finished extensive coursework with the Dental Organization for Conscious Sedation and lectured at both North Carolina and Emory University.
He is known for his artistic skill, professionalism, and ability to find the right solution for an array of dental challenges. Dr. Kevin Hogan is a cosmetic and restorative dentist serving patients in Mt. Pleasant South Carolina and the greater Charleston, SC areas.