1. Where does it hurt?
Identifying where the pain occurs can help pinpoint the source of the problem. If the pain happens near a specific tooth or teeth, it could simply be a cavity in that area. If the pain is widespread, you might be clenching or grinding your teeth at night. Widespread sensitivity could also be due to a variety of things such as gum recession or damage to your enamel, and pain in your gums could likely be a sign of periodontal (gum) disease. As you can see, the location of the pain can often be a clue as to what is causing your discomfort.
2. When does the pain occur?
One of the main differences between pain caused by sensitive teeth and pain caused by cavities is what brings on the pain. Sensitive teeth will typically react to the temperature of what you’re consuming, whereas cavities most frequently react to the food itself. If you have a cavity, chewing foods that are hard or crunchy may be painful. Eating sweets like candy can cause a sharp pain when it comes into direct contact with the cavity as well. If you find yourself avoiding certain foods or only chewing on one side of your mouth, you shouldn’t put off contacting your periodontist as it will only get worse if you ignore it.
3. Do you have other symptoms?
Sometimes the pain and discomfort is accompanied by other symptoms. For instance, if your gums are swollen or tend to bleed, that can be a hint that your tooth pain is caused by gum disease. Even something as simple as the pressure associated with a sinus infection can cause discomfort in your upper teeth.
Have you recently had an accident that involved your mouth? If so, it could be possible that you cracked a tooth or caused other damage. It’s important to consider outside factors when trying to find the source of your pain, as some things (like hitting your mouth on something) may not manifest visibly immediately. Your periodontist should be made aware so that they can be on the lookout for trouble resulting from the incident.
Whatever seems to be causing your toothache, it’s important that you address the issue promptly so that you can keep it from getting worse. Contact Dr. Raymond Kenzik in Ormond Beach, FL to schedule a consultation and develop a plan of action to help ease your pain.