The most common causes of dental pain are tooth decay and gum disease. Pain can also be caused by an infection of the tooth (abscess) or the gums. Or you may have pain from a broken or cracked tooth. Other causes of pain include infection and damage to a tooth from nervous grinding of your teeth.
A wisdom tooth can be painful when it is coming in but cannot break through the gum. It can also be painful when the tooth is only partway in and extra gum tissue has formed around it. The tissue can get inflamed (pericoronitis), and sometimes it gets infected.
Prompt dental care can help find the cause of your toothache and keep the tooth from dying or gum disease from getting worse. Self-care at home may reduce your pain and discomfort.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your dentist, doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your dentist, doctor, or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your dentist or doctor if:
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Current as of: May 12, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Steven K. Patterson, BS, DDS, MPH - Dentistry & Arden G. Christen, DDS, MSD, MA, FACD - Dentistry
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Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.