We visit our dentist every six months for routine dental exams and teeth cleanings. But we can suffer from acute or chronic issues between these appointments that require treatment from a dental professional.
Though severe pain or tooth fractures seem like clear dental emergencies, you should also contact your dentist if you notice milder issues too. Dr. David Rever, a dentist in Silver Spring, MD, describes three common dental problems and why you should let your dentist know if you experience them.
If you notice a jolt of pain in your tooth when biting into a sugary or cold treat, you may suffer from tooth sensitivity. This jarring sensation can be debilitating, but even if you find it tolerable, you should contact your dentist about this issue.
Tooth sensitivity occurs when enamel has worn away and exposed underlying dentin, which contains nerves that send pain signals to the brain when stimulated. Exposed dentin could mean you have structural damage in your teeth, such as a cavity or a worn filling.
Sometimes gums can bleed for acute reasons, such as harsh brushing techniques. However, persistent swelling, soreness, or bleeding in your gums could mean that you have gum disease or another periodontal issue.
Gum disease occurs when natural bacteria in your mouth spread and infect gum tissue. If left untreated, this could cause severe dental damage, including tooth loss. If you have concerns about your gums, you should let your dentist know.
Chronic Bad Breath
Bad breath can happen to the best of us if we eat a garlicky meal. But if the condition becomes chronic, you may have a problem that needs to be evaluated by a dental professional.
Bad breath, or halitosis, often stems from lingering food particles beginning to decay in your mouth when interacting with bacteria and saliva. Chronic bad breath could point to tooth decay, periodontitis, or an underlying medical condition.