There are few things as aggravating as a pesky, persistent toothache; even the most simple and mundane tasks can seem impossible when your mouth is constantly throbbing! Sometimes the cause is obvious, like a damaged or decayed tooth—and other times, it takes a little detective work to get to the root of the issue. But what if your toothache suddenly vanishes without a trace; is this a good sign, or an indication of a more serious problem? Here’s what your emergency dentist wants you to know about tooth pain and what you should do if your toothache goes away on its own.
What Causes Toothaches?
Tooth pain means that there’s a problem inside of your mouth, and while this pain can stem from a variety of issues such as damage or decay, an abscessed tooth, or infected gums, cavities are actually the most common culprits. When tooth decay progresses and forms a cavity in the deepest layer of the tooth, known as the pulp, the tooth’s sensitive nerve endings are exposed—and they send pain signals to your brain, letting you know that something isn’t right!
Also, chipped and fractured teeth are extra-vulnerable to bacteria, and sometimes this can lead to infections that completely obliterate the delicate nerve endings of your teeth. If this happens, the pain might subside, but your tooth is actually in danger of being lost permanently without proper treatment.
What Should I Do If My Toothache Suddenly Disappears?
If your tooth pain has disappeared for no apparent reason, you shouldn’t rejoice just yet—under normal circumstances, a toothache will not simply vanish on its own, as the pain is usually a symptom of the problem and not the actual problem itself. Instead, you should contact and visit your emergency dentist as soon as you can.
If the tooth’s pulp is in danger, failing to seek care might result in the tooth becoming unsalvageable and requiring extraction. In serious cases, the infection might spread to other areas of your mouth including your gums or jawbone. It can even enter your bloodstream and threaten the rest of your body!
How Can My Dentist Help?
One common procedure for addressing a tooth with an infected pulp is root canal therapy. Your dentist will tunnel into the tooth and remove the infected part of the pulp before sanitizing and sealing it back up with a dental crown. This keeps the tooth in your mouth where it belongs, while also effectively treating the source of the issue as well as your discomfort. And despite what you’ve maybe heard through the grapevine, this procedure isn’t scary or painful at all; in fact, many patients compare it to receiving a dental filling!
With other parts of your body, pain subsiding is normally a good sign. But if you’ve been dealing with a toothache that has suddenly disappeared, don’t hesitate to let your dentist know so they can quickly get to the bottom of the issue and get your smile back on track.
About the Author
Dr. Gabriel A. Nossa received his DMD from the University of Florida College of Dentistry and has taken countless hours of continuing education in a wide range of fields. His practice in Gainesville is thrilled to offer several services including emergency dentistry. If you or a loved one is suffering from a severe toothache or you’ve noticed that the pain is suddenly gone, don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment: (352) 332-8133.