Types of Toothaches

Intro
Woman with toothache pain
Woman with toothache pain (Photo: Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Many people will experience the pain of a toothache at some point in their life. Toothaches can be caused by cavities, broken teeth or abscesses. Different types of toothaches can help the dentist pinpoint the problem and take steps to fix it. Toothaches may also be a sign of an underlying disease or disorder, such as a sinus infection or temporomandibular joint disorder (TJD).

Sharp Tooth Pain or Sensitivity

Sharp pain or sensitivity to cold drinks could be caused by receding gums or a cavity
Sharp pain or sensitivity to cold drinks could be caused by receding gums or a cavity (Photo: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

This type of toothache is sharp stabbing pain or sensitivity that may come and go. The loss of tooth enamel may be caused by brushing too much or getting older. Sharp pain or sensitivity to cold drinks could be caused by receding gums or a cavity. The pain from this type of toothache could be the beginning of a cracked tooth, decay or an abscess.

Chronic Tooth Pain

Dental x-ray showing cavities and fillings
Dental x-ray showing cavities and fillings (Photo: Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Chronic tooth pain might be a sign of nerve damage, tooth decay, or a result of a trauma to the teeth, such as after a car accident, a fall or being hit in the mouth. Grinding the teeth causes nerve damage if it happens over a long period of time.

Tooth Pain While Eating

A toothache that only occurs when eating could be because of tooth decay or a crack in the tooth on that side
A toothache that only occurs when eating could be because of tooth decay or a crack in the tooth on that side (Photo: Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

A toothache that only occurs when eating could be because of tooth decay or a crack in the tooth on that side. See a dentist to have it checked out and taken care of as soon as possible.

Jaw Pain

Jaw pain
Jaw pain (Photo: Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Wisdom teeth that are impacted can cause this type of tooth pain and is typically felt at the back of the jaw bone. Grinding teeth together can make the teeth and jaw hurt. Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD/TMJ) can cause tooth and jaw pain. Pain from this type of toothache may also be felt in other part of the face, such as the cheekbone, eye or ear.

Throbbing Tooth Pain

Throbbing tooth pain
Throbbing tooth pain (Photo: Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

This type of toothache pain is severe and does not go away. Severe tooth pain accompanied by swelling in the face is the sign of an infection or abscess. See a dentist right away if you experience this type of tooth pain.

Significant

(Photo: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Any type of toothache pain should never be ignored. Tolerating sensitivity to hot or cold foods is painful, but with treatment can be reversed. Maintain good oral health because tooth decay and gum disease can lead to more serious health problems that include abscesses which can spread to the brain if left untreated. Gum disease has been linked to tooth loss, heart disease and strokes.

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