Toothache is the pain caused by tooth decay in and around the teeth and jaws and is usually unbearable without some form of anti-inflammatory medicine.

Everyone’s own subjective experience will determine how they feel toothache in their own way and It can come and go or be constant throughout the day. Eating or drinking can make the pain worse, particularly if the food or drink is hot or cold. It can also sometimes be difficult to decide whether the pain is in your upper or lower teeth. When a lower molar tooth is affected, the pain can often feel like it’s coming from the ear.

The cause of toothache?

Toothache occurs when the sensitive nerves and blood vessels become inflamed.

Teeth become inflamed as a result of:

  • An abscess – a collection of pus at the end of the tooth caused by a bacterial infection
  • Loose or broken fillings
  • Receding gums – where the gums shrink (contract) to expose softer, more sensitive parts of the tooth root
  • Tooth decay – this leads to holes (cavities) forming in the hard surface of the tooth
  • A cracked tooth – the crack is often so small that it can’t be seen with the naked eye

Treating toothache

The type of treatment you need for toothache will be determined by your dentist. In order to examine your mouth, the dentist may carry out an X-ray to try to identify the problem.

If necessary, the tooth may need to be removed if the toothache can’t be treated using the prescribed methods below

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