Brush up on better dental hygiene for National Toothache Day
With less than a week to go until the annual National Toothache Day, perhaps it is time the nation started to think about their own dental hygiene; making sure to brush regularly and importantly, not ignoring the first sign of toothache or discomfort. Also known as ‘odontalgia’, a toothache is pain emanating from either a single tooth or multiple teeth. National Toothache Day occurs every year on February 9, although why this specific date was chosen has long been open to debate! Some believe the origin of this day corresponds with the date that the Hershey Corporation was founded – the largest producer of chocolate in North America. After all, let’s not forget that consuming large amounts of sugar over a sustained period can increase the sensitivity of already sensitive teeth, as well as exacerbating decay leading to a toothache. One probably wouldn’t celebrate a toothache on February 9, so maybe instead, it could be the perfect opportunity to boost knowledge on ways of avoiding toothaches in the first instance, share knowledge with others, or use the day as a kick up the backside to arrange that long overdue dentist appointment – especially after all those sugary Christmas treats! Tooth decay is usually the primary reason for toothache, which will not get better on its own. Anyone with a toothache must see a dentist as soon as possible for diagnosis and treatment. If left untreated, a toothache and the condition that is causing it can worsen. Causes of toothache may include: In addition to tooth decay, toothache may be caused by:
- A damaged filling.
- Grinding teeth (bruxism).
- Infected gums.
- Tooth abscess.
- Tooth fracture.
- Fever or headache.
- Foul-tasting drainage from the infected tooth.
- Pain that is sharp, throbbing, or constant. The pain may only occur when pressure is applied to the tooth.
- Swelling around the affected tooth.
- There are signs of severe infection.
- There are signs the infection is spreading, such as swelling of the face or neck.
- There is a high risk complications – such as people with diabetes or a weakened immune system.