Although some of us live to eat, most of us eat to live healthy, productive lives. We want to be able to do it without any kind of discomfort. That being said, pain does have a purpose.
Considered to be a protective response from your body, anything from minor to severe pain is our sensory triggers attempting to communicate that something is amiss. Pain located in the gums and teeth is no exception.
If you’re experiencing pain while eating, the symptoms could be a sign of dental issues. Here are four of the most common types of pain, and what they could mean.
This dental pain is momentary. Often described as a “shooting pain” which manifests itself while drinking warm coffee or eating ice cream, this sensation is usually associated with a specific tooth.
The causes of tooth sensitivity can be far reaching, including:
- Recent dental work
- Small cracks or cavities allowing temperature to penetrate enamel
- Gum Disease
- A loose filling
- An exposed tooth root due to abrasion or gum recession
- Worn enamel
Treatment of this symptom depends on its cause. Anything from using toothpaste designed to encouraged enamel growth to a root canal or deep cleaning could be appropriate.
Sharp Pain While Chewing
Pressure sensitivity with teeth can occur with any type of hard food. Normally your teeth should be able to resist this pressure. When sensitivity is present, the culprit could be one of three things: severe tooth decay, a loose filling, or a cracked tooth.
Although a loose fillings can be easily replaced by a dentist, the other causes of pain may need to be addressed immediately. Dentists can remove decay, protect the root canal, and seal any spaces or cracks within a tooth, but letting these symptoms persists can lead to more costly, painful, and complicated treatments.
Food Stuck in Teeth?
If food commonly becomes stuck between your teeth, this could be a sign that your teeth are crooked. Another cause could be a loosening of teeth due to gum disease. The force of chewing is sufficient enough to force food between teeth before we notice there has been any significant change to our teeth’s mobility. In other words, this could be the first warning sign.
Orthodontics can help if crooked teeth are the cause, but gum disease must be treated with changes in oral hygiene, and an appointment with your dentist. Your dentist may then recommend further treatment.
Jaw Pain after Eating
Sometimes eating a hard-to-chew meal can make you feel like you’ve just had the worst workout of your life, accompanied by jaw pain in your muscles and joints. Normally, your jaw should be able to withstand this kind of workout. Soreness is an indication of TMJ.
If you have been regularly experiencing pain while eating, it’s time to come in.