What causes toothaches: signs and symptoms

While there are a variety of factors that may cause a toothache, the most common type is tooth decay. Tooth decay is caused by bacteria in your mouth on your teeth and gums that, once mixed with acids from sugary foods cause plaque.

Teeth have three layers: the enamel or hard outer layer, dentine, which is a softer layer underneath, and the center, which consists of the nerve and blood vessels.

When tooth decay begins to reach the center of your tooth, it can cause pain associated with a toothache. This may be felt by your tooth throbbing, sharp pains that come and go, pain when pressure is applied or when eating, or swelling around the gums.

To avoid this, we need to maintain excellent oral hygiene by brushing teeth twice daily, flossing once daily and seeing your dentist for a general checkup every 6 months.

Diet is also an important factor. Besides cutting down on sugary foods, it’s important to limit snacking during the day. When you’re eating a meal, your mouth is able to produce enough saliva to act as a protectant against acidic foods, however it isn’t able to produce as much when snacking in smaller amounts.

Keep and eye out for these factors and if you are experiencing any symptoms of a toothache, arrange a checkup with one of our dentists as soon as you are able.