Have you ever had a toothache that was so painful it felt like you were dying? Tooth pain is something that the majority of us experience throughout our lives, but are there ever instances when these irritating aches can become life-threatening? Keep reading to learn more about tooth pain and how it can sometimes progress into something potentially fatal if you don’t seek emergency dental treatment.
What Are Some of the Common Causes of Tooth Pain?
Tooth pain is the result of the nerves in your mouth sending distress signals to your brain, and it can occur for several different reasons. A few of the most common explanations include:
- Tooth decay – Often triggered by harmful oral bacteria, this is the cause of most toothaches and is often the result of poor hygiene.
- Damaged tooth – If you get hit in the face, it might result in a chipped, cracked, or otherwise fractured tooth that could cause pain.
- Gum disease – If bacteria become trapped underneath the gumline, it causes the gum tissue to become swollen and tender.
- Wisdom teeth eruption – When your wisdom teeth erupt, you’ll usually experience some discomfort, especially if they become impacted.
- Abscess or infection – These problems often result from other issues remaining untreated; patients often experience severe pain accompanied by symptoms like swollen gums, bad breath, and more.
When Can Tooth Pain Become Life-Threatening?
Technically speaking, a toothache itself cannot kill you; however, if the pain is the result of an untreated infection, there is a chance of a potentially fatal complication. Sometimes these infections are capable of traveling beyond the mouth, where they’ll threaten things like your immune system, blood stream, and even vital organs such as the heart and brain. Serious issues like heart attacks, sepsis, and diabetes are even possibilities.
How Can I Prevent Tooth Infections?
The good news is there are several ways you can actively prevent tooth infections and protect your overall health. Consider the following tips:
- Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time, ideally with a soft-bristled toothbrush coupled with a fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss every day; this habit is just as important as brushing, as it allows you to clear out the spaces in your mouth that your toothbrush cannot access.
- Drink plenty of water and try to reduce your intake of sugary drinks.
- Don’t smoke or use tobacco products.
- Visit your dentist at least twice a year for routine preventive care.
Not every toothache will seem serious, but they can have dangerous consequences if allowed to worsen. That said, if you’re experiencing symptoms that might indicate an abscess or infection, you should contact your emergency dentist immediately; they’ll be able to inspect your mouth, determine the root of the issue, and prescribe the appropriate treatment to get your smile back on track!
About the Practice
Omega Dental of Bedford proudly serves patients and families in the Bedford, TX area under the leadership of Dr. Prashantkumar Gajera and Dr. Julyat Gajera. Their practice is thrilled to offer a wide range of services including emergency dentistry. If you or a loved one is suffering from severe tooth pain, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today: (817) 518-6915.