What’s Causing My Toothache?

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When you’re experiencing tooth pain, you want to know why so you can relieve it quickly. Pain is your body’s response to a problem, so it’s always best to see your dentist if you’re experiencing tooth or mouth pain. Northern Virginia dentist Dr. Datta Malyavantham can help relieve dental pain, but in the meantime, here are the most common reasons why your teeth or mouth might hurt.


Cavities are one of the most common dental conditions. Bacteria erode enamel, often in between or on top of teeth, and when the sensitive tissue beneath the enamel is exposed, you might feel sensitivity or pain. Cavities are easiest to manage when they are small, so see your dentist as soon as possible if you suspect a cavity.

Damaged or Lost Filling

Fillings and crowns don’t last forever, so when they become dislodged whether by accident or just through normal use, they expose the sensitive tissues inside of the tooth. Your dentist will examine the area and re-seal the tooth.

Teeth Grinding/Clenching/TMJ

You may find yourself bearing down on your teeth during the day, or wake up with a sore jaw, which is a good indication you are clenching or grinding your teeth at night. Your dentist can offer solutions to help save your teeth from excess wear and tear, as well as painful headaches, toothaches and jaw pain.

Abscessed Tooth

Tooth abscesses form when the tooth’s roots become infected. These are extremely painful and potentially dangerous to your overall health in addition to potential tooth loss. Tooth abscesses usually require antibiotics.

Wisdom Teeth Coming In

By the time we are adults, our teeth are usually set in place. Unfortunately, wisdom teeth still come in later in life when the teeth aren’t able to move around to make space in the mouth, and they can cause pain, swelling, and jaw stiffness. Not all wisdom teeth need to be removed, so it’s important to visit your dentist to determine whether they are coming in properly or if they need to be removed.

Temperature Sensitivity

Teeth have a hard exterior called enamel that protects the underlying layer of the tooth, called dentin. When enamel is eroded by bacteria or is cracked due to a tooth crack, the dentin is exposed and more susceptible to extreme temperatures.

There are many reasons why your teeth may hurt, but Dr. Datta can help. Call our office today or schedule an appointment online to find fast relief for your toothache.

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