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Tooth pain can be annoying, or it can be debilitating. No matter how mild your tooth pain may be, the fact that you have it indicates there is a problem that needs to be addressed. Treatment for your pain depends on the cause and severity of the problem. There are several reasons you may be experiencing tooth pain.

Over-the-counter pain relievers may stop the pain, but discovering the cause is important because if the source is not detected and addressed, a minor problem could develop into a serious condition. Toothaches can be caused by decay in a tooth, infection, gum disease, bruxism or grinding your teeth, a broken or cracked tooth or some other injury to the tooth.

Cleaning out the decay and filling the tooth may relieve the pain and repair the tooth. An infected tooth may need root canal therapy in order to relieve pain and save the tooth. If a tooth is badly infected and severely decayed, it may need to be removed. A thorough examination will reveal the reason for the pain and allow your dentist to make recommendations on how to alleviate it.

Treatment for Jaw Pain

Jaw pain can be caused by an infected tooth, but it is most often the result of a problem with the temporomandibular joint. TMJ, or TMD, as it is sometimes referred to, is a condition in which the jaw joint becomes sore.

Pain in the jaw joint can be the result of an injury to the jaw, overuse of the temporomandibular joint or radiating pain from a toothache. The most common cause of jaw pain is the result of clenching and/or grinding of the teeth. This often happens during sleep. Treatment for TMJ/TMD may be as simple as wearing a nightguard while sleeping.

A custom-made nightguard is a dental appliance that fits your upper and lower teeth. It prevents your teeth from touching while you are asleep. Some nightguards are cushioned. The nightguard helps you rest comfortably while preventing the clenching and grinding that causes the jaw muscles to become strained.

Accurate Diagnosis

Whether you are experiencing tooth pain or jaw pain, an accurate diagnosis is important for effective treatment. A thorough examination is required, and diagnostic imaging such as x-rays may also be necessary to accurately identify the underlying problem causing your discomfort.

Contact Smiles in Malibu to schedule an appointment with Dr. Perkins, and discover the source of your pain.

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