Toothache can become severe if not handled right away because the “pulp” of a tooth is confined withing a rigid framework consisting of the tooth itself and the jaw bone. Pulp contains nerve tissue and the blood vessels. When the pulp gets necrotic and as a result an infection develops, the pressure inside the tooth builds up. The same thing can happen if the there is inflammation due to decay or trauma. In this case the tissue will swell up with resulting high pressure. There is no way this pressure can get drained on its own because of the rigid framework. As a result you feel excruciating pain. Therefore, it is important to know how to handle toothache in different situations. Here are some examples:
- Apply heat or cold to a tooth that is hurting?
Cold, though any decayed or abscessed tooth that is hurting can be extremely sensitive to cold. When a muscle hurts, you can place warm compresses. That way the blood supply to the area increases resulting in rapid healing. In such situation that is accompanied by a little bit of swelling of the tissue. This swelling does not cause any significant problem. But if you do the same thing for toothache, the condition will get worse. When you apply heat to a hurting tooth or jaw bone, even the slightest increase in the pressure will result in excruciating pain. Again, this is because these infected areas are confined within rigid structures and the pressure does not have anywhere to drain.
- You started chewing gums to give up smoking. Now you are having pain. Your teeth are cracking. What should you do?
You’re overworking your jaws and muscles. That may result in the painful muscles and joints. Your teeth are being flexed repeatedly; that is compromising the seal of the filling margins and resulting in cavities. The fillings and teeth are being subjected to too much wear and fracture. You can also experience gingival recession due to this. The best option will be to limit the chewing of gums. Use the patches to quit smoking. Here, if you do not have toothache, you can apply warm compresses to soothe the muscles. Stay on soft diet for 2 to 3 weeks (avoid popcorn, pretzel, ice) If needed, you can ask your doctor to write you a prescription for muscle relaxants. Taking ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) always helps in reducing swelling and pain.
- Your teeth hurt when you get sinus infection. Is that normal?
Yes, it is normal. The nerves that innervate the top back teeth run along the floor of the maxillary sinus on both sides. So, when you get sinus congestion, the nerves are subjected to pressure and you feel the pain. There is nothing to panic about. Most likely it will go away once the sinus condition has been brought under control. You can use nasal decongestant. You can also inhale steam or some other medications intended for that purpose through a vaporizer. You will have to get antibiotics prescribed by your physician in the case of a sinus infection. You may want to get evaluated by your dentist if the condition gets prolonged. Most of the time, though, decay or abscess is ruled out by the dentist in this kind of situation.
If after repeated treatment, problems still persist then its best to consult dentists or attend any dental convention (read conference)that will surely bring out a solution.