Tooth decay is one of the most common diseases in the world, nearly as prevalent as the common cold. It’s also one of the two major dental diseases—the other being periodontal (gum) disease—most responsible for tooth and bone loss.
When your teeth bother you, this is a signal your body is giving you that something is not right in your mouth. Here are three of the most common symptoms that may necessitate root canal treatment:
1. Sensitivity to Hot and Cold
Teeth may be sensitive to cold and hot for several reasons. A crucial distinction is that if a tooth is sensitive to heat, it is more a problem than if sensitive to cold. Once when we drink a cup of coffee/tea or a bowl of soup and your tooth hurts because the nerve within the tooth is dying or has died. By this the heat expands the gas within the tooth and it gets more painful. This informs us that for a few reasons, like decay, a fracture or trauma, the nerve and blood flow within the tooth is compromised and a root canal treatment is necessary to fix the situation. This procedure will really be done quite simply.
Reasons for cold sensitivity are:
Ø Gum recession (age related or from brushing too hard) that has exposed the root of the tooth normally covered by gum. The root becomes highly sensitive.
Ø Fracture of a filling or a leaky filling
Ø Fracture of the tooth itself
Ø Wearing away of the enamel on the biting surface of a tooth that allows cold to reach the middle part of the tooth called the dentin
Ø Leaking margin of a crown
Ø Open contacts ( spaces) between teeth
Ø Periodontal disease that causes gums to shrink and expose root surfaces
Ø The nerve inside the tooth is dying or injured in some way
Ø New, deep filling or crown that temporarily has caused nerve hypersensitivity
Ø Decay in the tooth
These are the main reasons a tooth may be cold sensitive. The good news is that treatment at our office can alleviate all of these conditions.
2. Pressure Sensitivity
You may have an infection within the tooth that has reach to the bone. If your tooth is often sensitive instead of intermittently sensitive, this can be often the case. Alternatively, your tooth may hurt temporarily, and will take a time to recover. A tooth that is only irregularly sensitive to biting/chewing pressure could be a classic sign of a cracked tooth, or might indicate that your bite is out of alignment.
Occasionally, you may have sensitivity in a recently restored tooth only when pressure hits a very particular place on the chewing surface. This may indicate bubbles in the composite material used to fill the tooth, which compress under chewing pressure and cause pain. In this instance, the filling will need to be replaced.
3. Dull Aches, Pressure, and Constant Pain
Ignoring constant pain and pressure in one’s mouth is not good risk management. Such pain can be caused by an abscess, a serious infection that can spread to the bone. Infections of this nature can be fatal if not treated, so it’s always important that constant pain and pressure never be ignored.
Keep your health and your teeth, by minding your body’s signals. Believe it or not, this kind of dental pain can be sinus-related. Your upper back teeth share the same nerves as your sinus cavity. As a result, that pain can be referred to your teeth and vice versa. However, the other possibility is that you are clenching your jaw and grinding your teeth.
If you would like more information on tooth decay treatment, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.
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