Tooth pain can occur from rotten teeth, infection, fractures or cracks, and many other reasons; they are of various intensities and sometimes become unbearable to people. If you are also experiencing unbearable tooth pain and want to stop it, then you will get to know about it in detail.

Pain doesn’t emerge anytime, anywhere, without any reason. It has some underlying causes leading to severe pain. When the cause irritates the branches of the Trigeminal nerve

Why Tooth pain occurs?

Tooth pain arises when the nerve endings of it are irritated or exposed in the mouth. A tooth can be divided into four parts:

  1. Enamel
  2. Dentin
  3. Cementum
  4. Pulp

Enamel is the outermost part and doesn’t have any nerve endings, so when we chew food, there is a slight sensation that comes from the underlying nerve endings of Dentin & Pulp. If dentin or pulp is exposed in the mouth for any reason, their nerve endings get exposed, and after that, slight discomfort to the Tooth can cause pain.

Pulp is the most nerve-rich element in a tooth, and its exposure can lead to severe unbearable pain.

Types of Dental pain

Dental pains can be of various types, such as:

  1. Sensitivity – Sensitivity is a type of dental pain that occurs when a stimulus like hot or cold food is introduced to the Tooth. It is non-spontaneous, and you can feel a sharp pain when eating hot/cold or sweet food as it irritates the exposed nerve endings of the Tooth.
  2. Dull Pain – It is a dull toothache which happens now and then without any stimulus; this can be because of a rotting tooth in its initial stages. The pain is relatively less and doesn’t affect the person much, but it gets severe at night.
  3. Sharp Pain – Sharp pain can be a sign of a fractured tooth. When applying pressure to a fractured tooth, the pulp and nerve endings inside it compress and cause a sharp and unbearable pain that stops after removing the pressure.
  4. Throbbing Pain – Throbbing pain is a spontaneous and severe pain that occurs when the pulp is infected. It can be due to various reasons.

Causes of unbearable tooth pain

Leading causes of Unbearable tooth pain

If you are experiencing unbearable tooth pain, then it can be due to the following:

  1. Rotten/Decayed Tooth – A rotting tooth is the most common cause of pain. In the initial stages of decay, pain is non-spontaneous and occurs only when eating hot/cold food. Still, the pain becomes spontaneous and highly unbearable after the decay reaches the inner portion.
  2. Exposed Cementum, Dentin, or Pulp – These can expose in the mouth for many reasons, such as improper brushing, using a lot of abrasives on teeth, Tooth chipping off, receding gum lines, etc. The cementum, dentin, and pulp nerve endings get irritated when exposed to the mouth.
  3. Fractured Tooth – A broken tooth causes unbearable pain, which only happens when pressure is applied.
  4. Post-operative pain – It occurs when an endodontic surgery or tooth removal is done. You should visit a dentist if you are experiencing it.
  5. Pericoronitis – When wisdom teeth emerge in the mouth, it irritates the adjacent gum and Tooth. Similarly, all the teeth erupt in the mouth, and during their eruption, the gum around it can get infected and lead to pericoronitis. People with pericoronitis can experience dull pain in the mouth.
  6. Tooth Abscess – When the infection reaches the radical portion of the Tooth, it goes into the gum and causes pus formation, called a tooth abscess. Patients with tooth abscesses can also experience severe pain.

Why tooth pain becomes unbearable at night?

Most patients complain of tooth pain becoming unbearable at night, but why is it so? Is there any connection between nighttime and tooth pain?

The answer is Yes; tooth pain can be unbearable since, during the daytime, we have multiple things to do and forget about the dull ache in our mouth, but during the night, when we are static and want to sleep, we focus more on that dull pain, and it feels like the pain is increasing. Another reason for unbearable pain at night is that when we lie down, the blood flows in the head, pressuring the nerves and aggravating pain, leading to more severe pain at night.

Do you need to worry?

Severe and unbearable tooth pain is a type of dental emergency that needs to be treated as soon as possible. The pain will increase over time if you don’t manage it or visit a dentist to get it treated.

How to manage unbearable tooth pain

You can only manage tooth pain by visiting a dentist and getting it treated, but if you cannot see a dentist, then you can use these tips to minimize the pain until your dental visit.

  1. Clove oil – Clove oil is a naturally available anesthetic that numbs the region where you place it. Gently apply a small amount of clove oil over the Tooth, which is responsible for the pain.
  2. Saltwater Rinse – Salt mixed in lukewarm water helps in relieving pain. You can rinse your mouth with it to get relief.
  3. H2O2 Rinse – H2O2 is a famous antiseptic used by dentists or other medical professionals. It can ease the pain caused by an infection in the mouth.
  4. Cold Compress – Applying ice or cold compress numbs the region and reduces the pain in the Tooth.
  5. Over-the-Counter Medications – Pain killers like Paracetamol or Ibuprofen can help relieve the pain for a limited amount of time till your next visit to a dentist.

These tips manage the unbearable tooth pain to some extent; use these tips if you cannot go to your doctor for some time, as it doesn’t replace the needed medical treatment. You should visit a dentist for proper treatment. 

When to visit a doctor?

You have to visit a doctor if you are experiencing pain, even if it is minimal because it can have a severe underlying issue that must be treated as soon as possible. For example, if you are having pain due to a decayed/rotten Tooth, treating it in the initial stages is much easier compared to a grossly decayed/rotten Tooth.

What to expect from a doctor?

You can expect a treatment of the underlying cause, leading to pain. The Dentist will undergo a cleaning procedure called scaling or Oral prophylaxis. After Scaling, the Dentist will treat the underlying cause.

If the pain is due to a rotten tooth, you can expect to clean the cavity and fill it with restorative material. If the Tooth is infected inside, the Dentist will undergo Root canal treatment. 

If you have a cracked or fractured Tooth, the most used treatment procedure will be extraction or trimming if the Tooth is manageable. The Dentist will perform Root canal treatment and place a crown/cap on it to prevent the crack from progressing.



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