Smile Arts of NY

Why does a toothache hurt so much?

Tooth pain NYC

Ever wonder how a tooth can cause so much pain and discomfort?  A severe toothache can keep a person up all night.  A toothache can be so distracting that a person is unable to think about anything else because of the pain. 

When someone has a bad toothache that’s literally all they can think about.  The worse thing about a bad toothache is that pain meds may not be able to help.  So how can a small tooth cause so much discomfort?

tooth nerves

The mouth is very well Innervated

The oral cavity has a large network of nerves sending sensory information to the brain. This electrical network is very efficient at transmitting information to your brain.   That’s why tooth pain can be so extreme.  Unfortunately, home remedies are are not helpful when the nerve tissues is causing pain.  The best way to get out of pain in this situation is to see the dentist for a root canal or a tooth extraction.

Is a Toothache from cavities?

Ever wonder if tooth cavities hurt?   The answer may surprise you.  Cavities do not hurt until they reach the nerve of the tooth.  At which point placing a filling will not get the person out of pain.

So what happens when the cavity get into the nerve of the tooth?

That’s when the pain usually starts.  Tooth pain caused by a cavity usually requires a root canal procedure.  Removing the injured nerve from the tooth results relief from pain. 

How to prevent tooth pain?

Most painful dental experiences can be avoided by simply seeing the dentist every 6 months.  Prevention is the best cure.  Cavities when found early are easily treated with dental fillings.  If a cavity is untreated for years it can extend into the nerve of the tooth causing pain and requiring expensive dental procedures to fix the tooth.

Does a Root Canal Hurt?

Root canal molar

A common misconception is that root canal procedures are painful.  In reality the root canal process gets the patient out of pain.  A very common dental emergency is when a patient is in pain from a large cavity that reached the nerve of the tooth.  The root canal procedure removed the inflamed and infected nerve.  Patients then leave the office feeling a lot of relief.  Usually, just a few Advils are needed after the procedure is done.   While prior to the procedure pain killers would not help at all. 

Are there other options besides a root Canal?

As dentists our priority is to save teeth when possible.  When tooth decay extends into a tooth the decay maybe too extensive to save the tooth.   Also, the patient may elect to extract the tooth rather than having a root canal.   In these situation we extract the tooth causing pain/discomfort.

What else May cause Tooth pain?

There are a few other factors that may cause tooth pain/discomfort

  1. Teeth grinding at night puts a lot of pressure on teeth.  This may injure the teeth temporarily causing them to be painful.  Usually, wearing a night guard and eating a soft diet will reverse this discomfort.  
  2. Gum disease can be painful as well.  A person with active gum disease has bacteria living in the gums creating an active infection.  Usually periodontal treatment is required to help heal these infected gums.

How can I tell what's causing my Tooth pain?

While Google may be a source for an immense amount of knowledge, it’s best to visit the dentist to find out why your tooth hurts.  Usually, dental x-rays are necessary to find the problem.  There are other tests dentists perform to figure out why a tooth hurts.  It’s best to visit the dentists for your Emergency tooth pain.

You might also enjoy...

About Dr. Peter Mann

Dr. Peter Mann

Having completed NYU School of Dentistry and a General Residency program in Kings County hospital.  Dr. Peter Mann has trained with some of the top world renowned dentists.  Being recognized in 2009 with a fellowship award from the (ICOI) International Congress of Oral Implantology and in 2012 with a fellowship award from the (AGD) Academy of General Dentistry.   

In 2009 Dr. Peter Mann decided it was time to achieve his vision by opening his dental office to provide outstanding dental services to NYC residents.  Smile Arts of NY is located  in the heart of Manhattan on E. 40th between Madison and Park ave.

Originally born in Ukraine, when iron curtain of communism collapsed his family took the opportunity to pursue the American dream by moving to New York. Dr. Peter Mann has lived in New York ever since, for over 33 years. His goal is to provide excellent dental experience for his fellow New Yorkers.

Dr. Mann lives minutes from the office. Patients undergoing treatment have his cell phone number and can always get in touch with any questions or concerns. It’s not unusual to see Dr. Mann arriving after hours to help a patient with an emergency.