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Toothaches can appear at nearly any age. They can range from very little pain to excruciating pain that makes even speaking or moving your jaw nearly impossible.

Inside of your tooth is a small area that contains nerve endings, called pulp.  A toothache is commonly caused by damage to the nerve endings contained in the pulp. A toothache can be a sign that you have a cavity, abscess, or other oral emergency.

If you have a toothache, DO NOT apply aspirin to the affected area, as that may burn your gum tissue. Instead, first carefully rinse your mouth out with warm water–not cold or hot, if it can be avoided. Then, gently use floss or another ADA-approved interdental cleaner to remove any food particles stuck between your teeth. If the pain continues, call your dentist.  

If you continue to feel pain in a tooth even after taking appropriate oral pain-relieving medications, you may have damage to the pulp in your tooth. You may also have damaged the pulp if you continue to feel pain 24 hours after a tooth has been knocked out or extracted.

Not all tooth damage is strictly linked to pain; it could be more visual in nature. If you see an abscess around a tooth, your pulp may be damaged. A dental abscess often looks like an irritated pocket full of pus or fluid, and is caused by infection in the tissue. Facial rashes, high fevers, irregular chills, and noticeable discharge are all common signs and symptoms of tooth pulp damage. If you feel your pulp may be infected or damaged, speak with your dentist as soon as possible to check for possible signs of a major dental emergency.

If you would like to schedule an oral exam at Chad S. Burt DMD & Kyle W. Dimond DDS, simply call our dentist office in Midvale, Utah, at 801-255-3578. Dr. Chad S Burt and our entire team look forward to making your smile shine!