Dental Symptoms You Should Never Ignore
It may be pretty obvious when it’s time to call the Dentist. A broken tooth and severe tooth pain are all issues that beckon an urgent dental appointment, but there are a few other less obvious symptoms that require a dental appointment, and should never be ignored as they may be a cause of a bigger problem.
If you’re experiencing any of the following issues, contact us today to schedule your appointment to see whether your condition needs immediate attention or if it can wait until your next routine appointment.
Although tooth pain usually prompts an obvious call to your Dentist, some may decide to wait to see if the pain resides after a few days. Even if the pain resides after a day or two, you still need to see your dentist. Your body may have fought off the infection but the root cause of it remains. If your tooth pain is severe, throbbing or simply won’t go away, contact your dentist immediately. Potential cause for pain includes trapped food particles in between teeth or gums, an infection at the root of the tooth or between gums (tooth abscess), advanced staged gingivitis (gum disease).
Anytime you see blood when you’re brushing or flossing, it should give you cause for concern. Gingivitis or gum disease can cause gums to bleed and can lead to a much more serious gum disease called periodontitis and tooth loss. Most cases of Gingivitis can be relieved with proper oral hygiene. Regular brushing, flossing and routine visits to your dentist can help prevent the disease.
If your gums are swollen and inflamed you definitely need to book an appointment with your dentist. Inflamed gums are caused by hardened plaque that has accumulated under your gum line. Inflamed gums can often be a sign of gingivitis or periodontitis (a more advanced condition which can lead to tooth loss if not treated early enough).
White Spots on Teeth
White spots on your teeth are the first signs of dental decay. Dental decay is an infection in your tooth where the enamel begins to dissolve in response to acid produced by bacteria. Tooth decay can often occur with no symptoms (especially at the beginning) which is why regular dentist appointments are critical.
Bad breath is one of the first signs of gingivitis. If you feel like you have bad breath even when you’re brushing regularly, you may have gingivitis. If left untreated, this can damage gums and the jawbone. Other causes of bad breath include cavities or an untreated infection. Bad breath can also be a sign of a more serious underlying condition such as a respiratory tract infection, diabetes or liver problems to name a few. When left untreated, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis, which can lead to tooth loss and other serious health conditions. It’s important to see your dentist immediately before this condition advances beyond the point of repair.
Changes of Color in the Mouth
When you’re brushing your teeth everyday (which you should be doing at least twice a day) take a peak inside your mouth to make sure everything is normal. Look at your cheeks, the top of your tongue and underneath your tongue to make sure there is no discoloration, lumps or inconsistencies from day to day. If you notice anything unusual, book an appointment with your dentist right away.
Most people don’t associate headaches with oral care but the two can be very closely related. If you’re experiencing frequent headaches (especially in the morning) , you might be grinding your teeth in the night. Your dentist can provide you with a nightguard (a mouthguard you wear at night) which should help alleviate your chronic headaches.
Increased Tooth Sensitivity
If your teeth suddenly hurt after eating or drinking, it’s important to pay attention. While the explanation might be as simple as your recent dental procedure, or eating something too acidic, it could be something more serious. Gum disease, excessive plaque, decay around fillings and excessive teeth grinding are all potential causes of increased tooth sensitivity. If your teeth suddenly begin to bother you, don’t hesitate to contact your dentist right away.
Sensitivity to Hot and Cold
If you’re experiencing an increased sensitivity to hot and cold, tooth decay is a good possibility. When dental decay first occurs, it affects the surface of your teeth. As the condition advances it makes its way into the center of the tooth where the nerves and blood vessels are located. This is when you start experiencing pain in response to hot and cold temperatures. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, book a dentist appointment immediately to get your cavity filled. The earlier you treat the cavity, the less likely it will develop into something more serious.
Snoring may seem like a harmless thing people do. Often times it’s due to your mouth’s anatomy — a low, thick soft palate, or not enough sleep, sleeping on your back, or consumption of alcohol. Snoring may indicate a more serious condition like obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). People with OSA experience periods of snoring along with brief periods when breathing stops or nearly stops, due to the tissues throat blocking the airway. If you snore, your dentist be able to help determine the cause and any course of action, if necessary.
Dry mouth can occur for a few different reasons. Sometimes, a dry mouth comes with age. It’s also a common side effect with many prescription drugs. However, if there’s no explanation for sudden dry mouth symptoms, it’s important you see your dentist. This could be a sign of bacteria or disease in the mouth. Also, saliva acts as a natural defense from tooth decay and helps maintain healthy teeth and gums. If your mouth is chronically dry, you may be more prone to tooth decay. Dry mouth (xerostomia) occurs when the mouth does not produce enough saliva due to a medical disorder or side effect of pain killers or other medications. If you experience dry mouth, let your dentist know so you can get recommended methods to restore moisture.
Sores That Won’t Heal
If you have a sore in your mouth that doesn’t go away within a week or so, talk to your dentist. Sores can result for many reasons including: infections from viruses or bacteria irritation from a dental device, or an underlying medical disease or disorder.
Metallic Taste in the Mouth
Do you sometimes feel like you’ve just chewed on a bunch of coins? It sounds odd but a popular sign of gingivitis (and possible periodontitis) is a metallic taste in the mouth. The taste is very distinct and can lead to bad breath as well. If you’re experiencing this symptom, call your dentist to make an appointment. The sooner you start treating the condition, the better the chances that it can be treated completely.
Clicking/Popping Jaw or Earache
One the most common reason for ear pain is temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, which can cause symptoms of earache along with clicking and/or popping of the
The TMJ is the “hinge” of the jaw that allows you to move your jaw back and forth, side to side. When the jaw does not function as it should, TMJ disorder may be the underlying cause. Your dentist will be able to perform, an examination of your jaw to help determine if you have TMJ. Therapy depends on the cause of TMJ. the severity of the condition and can include: over the counter pain relievers, splints, bite adjustment, injections, or surgery.