Common Causes For A Toothache

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Ouch! You just woke up, and the first thing you noticed was a shooting pain in your mouth. It’s an unpleasant way to start your day, to say the least. But what’s the reason behind your discomfort?

Identifying why your tooth is aching is the first step in solving the problem. We recommend leaving this task to your dentist. 

However, you might be interested in learning a few common reasons why teeth ache. We’ve listed a few of them here:


Something is Stuck

Many of us know the pain of having a popcorn kernel wedged between two teeth. Sometimes, food can become lodged in the gums and cause swelling or bleeding. Trying to remove it can make the issue worse; you may end up pushing the food further into the teeth or damaging your gum tissue.

If something is stuck firmly between your teeth, give your dentist a call to have it safely removed.


A Tooth is Growing In

You thought you were done growing new teeth when you were in elementary school. But wisdom teeth rarely develop until after you reach adulthood. They often emerge between the ages of 15-25, but may not come in until the age of 30! 

If your wisdom teeth are causing excessive pain, they could be impacted. Your dentist can take x-rays to spot any potential issues with your wisdom teeth.



While cavities are common, they are preventable. Most of us end up developing a cavity at some point or another in our lives. And once they develop, they often cause toothaches. You might notice pain when you chew, or simply as you go about your day. Getting a filling at the dentist will stop a toothache in its tracks.

But what happens when a cavity is left untreated? It may lead to this next dental issue:


Tooth or Gum Infection

An abscessed tooth can cause severe pain. Infections begin when bacteria get inside of the tooth, usually through a crack or cavity. As the infection develops, pus accumulates within the pulp chamber. 

Left untreated, bacteria could spread to the surrounding tissue or bone. It may even result in sepsis, which can be life-threatening. Call your dentist right away if you develop a tooth abscess or gum infection.


A Tooth is Chipped

Last week, you bumped your tooth while exercising. Now, you find yourself wincing whenever hot or cold food touches that spot. You may have chipped or cracked the tooth. 

When this happens, the sensitive nerves inside of the teeth become exposed. This causes heightened sensitivity and pain. Even slight pressure can make you flinch.


Temporary Relief for Toothaches

Trying to manage your pain while you wait to see the dentist? Try these quick tips:

  • Press a cold cloth against the side of your face where the sore tooth is
  • Take an anti-inflammatory pill to bring down swelling and reduce pain
  • Avoid any hot or cold foods—try to consume things that are room temperature


Toothaches rarely resolve themselves without help from a dentist. Make your mouth pain-free by scheduling an appointment.

Do you have a toothache? Our Henderson dental clinic is here for you. At EK Dental, we’re open 6 days a week and have evening hours available on weekdays. Contact us today, and we’ll find a solution for your toothache.

Article written by East Kildonan Dental

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