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What Causes Toothache?

Toothache can be extremely painful and disrupt your everyday activities due to the intensity of the pain. People often dismiss toothache as they assume it will go in time; it may pass, but it will always come back if not treated properly by a dental professional.

Causes Of Toothache

Unlike other physical ailments, toothache can be extremely difficult to identify as it can sometimes feel like earache. Whilst toothache often feels like it has come out of nowhere, toothache is usually a large indicator that you have an underlying dental problem such as:

Gum disease

Tooth trauma

Tooth decay


Broken teeth

An abnormal bite

Damaged fillings

Teeth grinding or other repetitive actions such as chewing gum

Most toothaches are caused by tooth decay which is progressing into advanced gum disease. This type of toothache is only immediately noticeable when consuming foods or drinks that are hot, cold or sweet and irritate the pulp inside your tooth. The pulp is surrounded by tissue and nerves, which can make it difficult for you to identify which tooth is causing the problem as the pain will be present across surrounding teeth too.


Symptoms of a toothache differ from person to person due to severity of the problem, but toothaches commonly appear in the following forms:

Sharp stabbing pains in or around a tooth

Constant throbbing pains

Pain when biting or clenching teeth

Pain when eating or drinking something very cold, very hot or sweet

Swollen gums surrounding the painful tooth



  • Bad taste in your mouth

If you start to experience any of the above toothache symptoms you should book an appointment to see your dentist immediately, you may have a dental infection that if left untreated can spread to your skull and even your bloodstream which could be life threatening.


Treatment for your toothache will depend on how you are diagnosed and how severe the problem is.

If you are found to have cavities in your teeth, where nerve endings are exposed and causing extreme pain, then your dentist might recommend you get a filling or have the tooth extracted, depending on how severe the cavity is.

Whereas if it is found that the tooth itself is infected, caused by bacteria that has worked its way into the core of your tooth, you may have to have a root canal treatment.


Similarly to most dental issues, toothache can be prevented by sustaining a good oral hygiene routine that includes brushing, flossing and finishing with an antiseptic mouthwash to kill any bad bacteria in your mouth that could lead to something more severe than bad breath.

Get in touch with us today on 01827 664 35