It is common knowledge that a constant toothache is one of the first symptoms of cavities (or tooth decay). This doesn’t mean, however, that every time your toothaches, you have decaying teeth. The problem could be one of the following:

It may be tooth sensitivity

If you feel a stinging pain when eating or drinking hot/cold foods, it may be tooth decay. However, it may also be tooth sensitivity. Common causes of sensitive teeth include receding gums (a symptom of gum disease), erosion of tooth enamel, or a chipped tooth. None of these are, as grave as tooth decay, but they are all bad. Visit a dentist, get a professional diagnosis, and start treatment immediately.

Or other tooth problems

If the pain is constant and throbbing, you may be suffering from an abscessed tooth. A dental abscess is caused by a bacterial infection and it leads to the formation of pus in the tooth or gums. If left untreated, an abscessed tooth may lead to serious, maybe even fatal, complications.

The problem may lie elsewhere

Sometimes, the ache starts from the jaw and radiates to the teeth. If your jaw carries more of the pain than your teeth, you may have a condition called temporomandibular disorder (TMD). This may be caused by misaligned teeth, constant teeth grinding, or impacted wisdom teeth.

While it may not be tooth decay, long-term pain in the teeth is always a sign that something is wrong. Once the pain persists for over 24 hours, get in touch with your dentist. Pearl Shine Dental provides top-class dental care for residents of Houston. Contact us on  281-477-7200 to make an appointment.