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Broken and chipped teeth can be frustrating, but they're easily treated by visiting the dentist immediately. They can cause needless stress and pain and if they're left untreated. Sometimes they go on to cause more serious problems.
When you break or chip a tooth you will normally notice it as soon as it happens. Most people experience pain when they’ve broken a tooth, particularly when chewing or biting food. It's also quite normal to feel pain as soon as the break happens. Sometimes you can break or chip a tooth and not notice it straight away. That's because you don’t feel any pain when the injury or break occurs.
Other than pain, you may also feel sensitivity to hot, cold or sweet foods, as well as swelling of the gum around the affected tooth. When you break or chip a tooth you should visit a dentist as soon as possible. For severe pain, or if you are bleeding from a broken tooth we recommend booking an urgent emergency appointment with a dentist.
You can break or chip a tooth in many different ways. It's a common dental injury after all. It can be as easy as biting or chewing something hard, such as a nut or a hard lolly.
It is also common to break or chip a tooth from an accident or sports injury.
Other causes of a broken tooth could include:
Toothache is any pain, soreness or ache felt in or around a tooth. It’s not just one type of pain. That means it’s sometimes hard to even describe what you’re experiencing to your dentist. The pain can be sharp, dull, throbbing or constant.
In some cases, the pain is only felt when you put pressure on the tooth. Your tooth might also be particularly sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. Pain with chewing is also fairly common.
Other symptoms could include a swollen gum around the tooth or deeper in your jaw, headaches and high fevers. You might also have bleeding from your tooth or bleeding gums. In the case of infection you might have foul-tasting fluid leaking from around the tooth.
Toothache is caused by both dental and medical factors. Dental causes of toothache may be related to your teeth, gums or jaw. Of all toothaches that our dentists see each day, the most common causes are:
Sometimes the pain is caused by a damaged filling or from sensitive teeth. Periodontitis or an abscess or infection in the tooth are also common. Gingivitis, or gum disease, can cause toothache, yet these can also be painless in some people. Toothache can also be caused by pain in other areas that radiate to the jaw. This is called referred pain. One common area is the temporomandibular or jaw joint, known as TMJ. Other less common medical causes of toothache include ear pain, sinus infections, shingles and sometimes even heart problems.
When you book at one of our dental practices for toothache you just want your pain to end. That’s understandable. It’s useful to think ahead about what your dentist will need to know to diagnose and treat your toothache.
Generally your dentist will ask you about your medical history and then thoroughly examine your mouth, teeth, gums, jaw, tongue, throat, sinuses, ears, nose and neck. You may also need an x-ray, depending on what your dentist suspects might be the cause of your toothache.
Your dentist will ask you some questions about the pain, such as:
Think about your answers to these questions before your appointment. Being prepared can speed up the diagnosis.
Your dentist will examine your mouth carefully, to diagnose the cause of your toothache. You may need one of these common treatments:
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