Does your tooth hurt whenever you bite down on a hard object? Please do not ignore it! There can be many reasons behind the pain, and you’ll need to figure out the exact cause before deciding what you need to do.
Early identification is key to effective treatment. It might even be the difference between saving or losing the tooth.
Here are a few possible reasons you are experiencing tooth pain:
When your overuse your teeth, they can become sore. Having a ‘bruised’ tooth might sound impossible, but it is not actually the tooth that gets bruised. Your teeth are attached to the bone through a slim ligament.
It is the same width as a few sheets of paper stacked together. When you eat a lot of hard things like nuts, hard candy, and ice or you frequently grind or clench your teeth, the ligament may experience more pressure than it can handle.
The ligament then gets ‘bruised’, and you feel a dull ache in your teeth. The simplest way to heal your teeth is to stop eating hard food for a while.
If the pain is too much, you can take ibuprofen to help with the inflammation. Take care not to clench or grind your teeth anymore to avoid putting stress on the ligament.
Uneven or Misaligned Bite
Occlusion is the medical term used to describe how your teeth fit together when you bite down. When the occlusion is perfect, all teeth in your jaw bear the weight evenly.
If the filling or cap on your tooth is too high, it will hurt when you bite down on it. You will start feeling it as soon as the anaesthetic leaves your system after your procedure.
The opposing tooth will also hurt as it will clash with the tooth sitting too high and experience added pressure.
A dentist can examine your bite to determine if any teeth are sitting higher than necessary. Once they identify the tooth, there are several ways to fix your bite and relieve the extra pressure experienced by the teeth.
Cavity or Abscess
If your teeth feel sensitive or you experience pain while eating, you might have cavities. Cavities or tooth decay are very apparent as the tooth becomes sensitive to certain kinds of food. For example, people often get extra sensitive to sweet food when they have a cavity.
If the cavity is large enough, food will get stuck inside it and worsen the pain. If cavities are left unattended for a long time, you will feel intense pain whenever you chew or bite down on something.
Keep in mind that there are different kinds of tooth decay, and not all of them hurt. If you can feel an opening in your tooth or experience a weird sensation, make an appointment with your dentist to get to the root of the problem.
A cracked tooth is very difficult to identify. However, if you have been experiencing a painful bite for more than two weeks and the pain is shooting and similar to an electric shock, you might have a cracked tooth.
Pay attention to where you experience pain. If it is limited to a small and specific area, there is a strong likelihood that your tooth is cracked. However, it could also be a fractured root, which can be ruled out or confirmed with a bite stick.
Gum infections cause inflammation and swelling. Sometimes it can spread to the ligament and make it painful to bite down on food. The pain you experience will be very similar to a bruised ligament—a throbbing pain or dull ache.
This kind of pain can usually be dealt with easily. Being consistent with brushing and flossing or doing an antibacterial rinse might eliminate the problem.
If it doesn’t work, it is time to visit your dentist. They will do an extensive cleaning to get rid of whatever is causing the infection.
Tooth pain is a symptom you should never ignore. Damage to other body parts might be treatable or repairable, but damage to the teeth is often irreparable.
Furthermore, dental procedures can be very expensive and painful. So if you want to avoid them, take good care of your dental health and visit your dentist at the first sign of trouble.
If you experience tooth pain, get it diagnosed and treated as soon as possible. It will save you a lot of trouble and money in the long run.