Getting To The Root Of It: 4 Strange Reasons Your Teeth Might Hurt

20 February 2015
 Categories: Dentist, Blog


Your oral health may be more important than you think.  In fact, a healthy mouth can often be an indicator of a healthy self.  Did you know gum disease can lead to health complications such as heart disease or a stroke?  While cavities are often the cause of your tooth pain, there are several other strange reasons you might have a toothache.

Dry Mouth

Having the right amount of saliva in your mouth is essential for keeping your teeth healthy and strong.  Saliva coats your teeth with protective minerals, dilutes erosive acids in your mouth, and helps rid your mouth of bacteria.  An absence of saliva can lead to dry mouth, which can cause gum disease, tooth decay, and oral infections.  In other words, your mouth isn't happy without spit.  To help encourage saliva production, you can chew sugar-free gum or suck on hard candy.  Drinking plenty of water and investing in a room humidifier are other suggestions.


You may think anxiety has more to do with your mental health.  However, it can also indirectly cause tooth problems.  For instance, anxiety may cause you to grind your teeth at night.  This can cause your jaw and teeth to ache.    

Receding Gums

Are your teeth sensitive to hot or cold foods?  It's possible that your gums are receding.  Although gum recession is a common condition, many people don't realize they have this problem because it occurs gradually.  Gum infection, genetics, harsh teeth brushing, and tobacco use are a few causes of gum recession.  Exclusive use of a sensitive toothpaste can help.  However, if the problem is serious, you may have to look into surgery.  For instance, a soft tissue graft is a procedure where a piece of tissue is taken from the roof of your mouth and then attached to the affected area.


A dental abscess is a buildup of pus inside of the teeth or gums.  Oftentimes, the abscess forms due to a bacterial infection.  Along with pain, you may experience a fever, sensitivity to hot and cold foods, or difficulty swallowing.  To fix an abscess, you may need to see an endodontist, a dental pulp and nerve specialist, for a root canal.  In order to prevent an abscess, it's a good idea to brush your teeth two times a day with a fluoride toothpaste and to floss.  Also, make sure to get a new toothbrush every three to four months.  Of course, regular dental checkups are important.  

If your teeth hurt, it's always best to see a professional so you can get to the root of the problem.