WHEN is it best to manage a toothache?
The best time to manage a tooth problem is ASAP. That’s why Drs. Laraway is committed to answering your emergency call 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
If you need to be seen after regular business hours there will be a $100 fee for AFTER HOURS emergency service.
Phone consultation is at NO CHARGE and Drs. Laraway will either answer your call or return it within one hour. Call 936-446-6774. If you are a patient of record Dr. Laraway may be able to call into your pharmacy for pain medication and or antibiotics.
WHY do teeth hurt?
Teeth have blood vessels and nerves in them which make them vital just like skin or bone. Trauma (accidents, biting into a pit or an ice cube) can crack teeth.So can repetitive nightly grinding associated with poor airways.
If the injury is deep enough it results in pulp or nerve damage.Repeated dental procedures like crowns or fillings can damage teeth as the inflammation increases during each tooth preparation.
Dental pulps are small enough that they cannot easily repair. There is very little blood supply to the tooth.As we age the vascularity decreases even more and teeth are less likely to heal.
Decay (dental caries) are an accumulation of bacteria and broken down tooth structure. The type of bacteria responsible for this process is primarily Streptococcus Mutans although recent studies name almost a hundred different species which contribute to this process.Some of the bacteria which penetrate a tooth during a formation of a cavity are Anaerobic. That means that they do not like oxygen and will not multiply or grow util the oxygen (air supply) to the tooth is limited.That happens whenever we fill or crown a tooth. That’s why pain can increase or begin after a filling or a temporary crown is placed on a tooth.In order to minimize permanent damage to the tooth’s pulp Drs.Laraway will advise you to take anti-inflammatories (ALEVE, ibuprophen, aspirin) prior to and following the dental visit.Treatment with NSAIDs can significantly reduce postoperative sensitivity and help teeth heal without permanent damage to the nerve. However, if you do not follow the doctor’s advice teeth may become irreversibly sensitive to hot and cold necessitating a treatment with a root canal or extraction.
3.PERIODONTAL (gum) disease.
PERIODONTITIS (gum infection) can also lead to a toothache. Although mostly asymptomatic this elusive oral disorder can allow for so much bone loss around teeth that they become loose in the socket.Chewing on periodontally compromised teeth can be painful.When and if that happens the tooth or teeth are ussually so heavily infected that they need to be removed.For more information on gum disease please visit our website www.guminfection.com
Frequent (every 6 months) visits to the dentist is the only way to diagnose and treat gum disease.Drs. Laraway can also test your saliva to find out if you are predisposed to having periodontitis before it starts. Oral DNA testing is proving to be an excellent adjunct in the hands of trained and skilled dental proffessional.It also helps in detection of other systemic diseases like human pappiloma virus which causes cancer. To find out more about salivary DNA testing call Laraway Family Dentistry at 936-321-1477.
HOW do we treat toothaches?
Depending on the type of problem we may recommend a root canal treatment, extraction (tooth removal) or deep cleaning (root planing and scaling).