All things considered, you’ve been handling the COVID-19 pandemic fairly well so far. You’ve been adhering to social distancing guidelines and wearing a mask on your grocery store runs. One day a sharp pain shoots through your tooth, distracting you from work and everything else. For a few days, you debate calling your dentist, but then the toothache fades away, seemingly out of nowhere. What should you do? Believe it or not, you should still call your dentist, even if your toothache goes away. Keep reading to learn why.
Why Do Toothaches Go Away Sometimes?
The most common reason behind a toothache is a good old-fashioned cavity. When decay works its way into the sensitive center of the tooth, known as the pulp, it results in excruciating pain because that’s where the tooth’s nerve is located. As the decay progresses, it eventually damages the nerve to the point where it stops sending pain signals to the brain, which would explain why your toothache appeared to have gone away.
However, just because the pain is gone doesn’t mean your problem is over. In fact, the infection may be more powerful than ever. The infection may eventually spread to other teeth, your gums, and even your jawbone, which will only result in even more pain in the future. Fortunately, there’s a way your dentist can help.
How Can Your Dentist Treat the Problem?
More often than not, the most effective way to treat a severe toothache or a tooth that has gone numb is with root canal therapy. While this procedure has an intimidating reputation of being painful, it’s actually designed to relieve your pain. Additionally, most patients report little to no discomfort during the procedure, thanks to local anesthetic and sedation dentistry if needed.
During a root canal, your dentist will access the inner portion of your affected tooth and remove the damaged pulp, including the nerve. The inside of the tooth is sterilized, filled with a synthetic material, and then sealed back up. Oftentimes, the tooth will need a dental crown to protect it from further damage.
Despite their reputation, root canals are a great way to restore your oral health. It prevents infections from spreading and saves your tooth from having to be extracted. Don’t be afraid to contact your dentist if you have a toothache that suddenly goes away. Doing so could save your tooth!
About the Author
Dr. Mark M. Farthing is a graduate of the Indiana University School of Dentistry who opened Indianapolis Family Dentistry in 1985 and hasn’t looked back. He has completed advanced training at the prestigious Dawson Academy and has taken additional coursework in sedation dentistry to ease his patients’ nerves. He is more than qualified to perform a root canal if you need one. If you have a toothache that goes away all of a sudden, contact Dr. Farthing at (317) 878-3384.