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What Happens If You Ignore a Toothache?

What Happens If You Ignore a Toothache?

Did you know that some of your body’s most sensitive nerves live in your mouth? This is why toothache, along with the sensitivity and throbbing that goes with it, is difficult to ignore.

If you’re like many people, you might wince at the first symptom of a toothache, take over-the-counter medicine, and hope it goes away. But the truth is, your toothache is most likely more serious than a brief discomfort, and allowing a toothache to fester can have poor consequences for your overall health. 

What happens if you ignore a toothache? Be aware of the risks, and know the benefits of visiting your Dallas dentist early.

Causes of toothache

  • Chipped, broke, or cracked teeth resulting from an accident or injury. It can also be caused by grinding your teeth and chewing on hard items like ice.
  • Tooth decay caused by poor oral health is the most common cause.
  • Damaged fillings that are chipped, worn, or cracked may cause sensitivity in your teeth.
  • Infected gums due to bacteria buildup can cause bleeding, swelling, and pain.
  • Tooth abscess is typically caused by poor oral hygiene, a high-sugar diet, and dry mouth. It is characterized by pus forming around the tooth.

Why you shouldn’t ignore a toothache

If the discomfort caused by a toothache doesn’t make you call for a dentist appointment, knowing the potential complications of ignoring an aching tooth might.

  • The infection can spread. Toothache infection may spread to your face, jaw, neck, brain, and heart. Typical symptoms that signify a spreading infection may include headache, fever, dizziness, fatigue, swelling, rapid breathing, dehydration, stomach pain, and an increased heart rate.
  • Greater pain, more costs. If a toothache is left untreated, it may lead to more costly and extensive dental procedures, like crowns, root canals, or tooth loss.
  • Life-threatening conditions. There are rare instances when an ignored and untreated toothache takes a turn for the worse. For instance, a person might develop sepsis, which occurs when an infection triggers a toxic, intense response from your immune system. Sepsis can be deadly.

If you are experiencing a toothache, especially if it lasts for a day or two, go to your Dallas dentist immediately. A toothache accompanied by chest pain, fever of 103 or higher, a skin rash, repeated vomiting, and difficulty breathing, can be signs of a more severe medical condition. Be sure to seek emergency medical help if you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned.