Azarko Dental Group Blog

Tooth Swelling & Pain: Causes & Remedies

Have you noticed that your tooth or gums are swelling or painful? Our Edmonton dentists explain why this may be happening and what you should do next.

What is tooth swelling?

We sometimes see patients who complain of a tooth swelling or tooth pain. This dental problem can potentially be attributed to minor or major issues. 

Minor issues of swelling in the mouth include missing a piece of food when flossing, which can lead to irritation, or eating a piece of food or another object that leaves a scratch (in which case you might end up with both a toothache and a swollen cheek). Dental abscesses, an infected tooth or gum disease are classified as major dental issues. 

Toothaches and swelling can come on very suddenly, causing discomfort and throbbing pain that ranges from mild to very serious, and it can be constant or come and go. You may not only feel pain in your tooth but also throughout your jaw and head.

If you have a toothache, you might also notice:

  • Pain when chewing
  • Swelling surrounding your teeth and inside the mouth
  • Swelling of your face and jaw
  • Bleeding from your tooth
  • Bleeding or swelling in your gums

No matter the cause, keep in mind that a tooth or mouth that is swelling is not healthy and should be examined by a dentist as soon as possible.

What causes tooth swelling?

A tooth can swell for many reasons, including the following:

Gum Disease

Not brushing and flossing properly and maintaining a good oral care routine (including visiting the dentist regularly for a dental cleaning) can lead to being diagnosed with gum disease. When our teeth and gums don't receive proper attention, plaque and tartar accumulate and will eventually cause oral health issues such as swelling. A bacterial infection may even develop.

Being Pregnant

Being pregnant affects the body's hormones, often leading to an increase of blood flow to the mouth. This may cause the gums to grow more sensitive, which may lead to swelling in the mouth.

Vitamin Deficiency

Did you know that vitamin deficiency can cause the gums to swell? That's why it's important to get enough Vitamins B and C - two of the most essential vitamins for natural teeth and gum repair and health. 

Other potential causes include a dental injury, loose filling, cracked tooth, inflammation of the pulp inside your tooth, infection, an issue with your jaw and receding gums.

Will tooth swelling go away on its own?

Many patients wonder, "How long does a tooth swelling last?" Some ask us whether the swelling will go away on its own. Like many dental issues, swollen teeth are not likely to return to their normal state on their own. If you notice a swollen tooth, your dentist should examine and treat it as soon as possible to prevent more long-term issues and painful symptoms. The sooner your toothache pain and swelling are treated, the sooner you can get back to smiling.

How to Reduce Swelling in Gums Fast

If you have painful or swollen gums, the first question on your mind will be, "What is the fastest way to heal swollen gums?" If you have pain in your mouth and you notice redness, swelling or a bad taste, this qualifies as a dental emergency. See your dentist right away. Do not hesitate to call our Edmonton office if your toothache lasts for more than two days.

Our dentists can diagnose the cause of your swollen teeth and gums and recommend the best treatment. At home, you can take over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen to reduce soreness and swelling. Gargling with salt water can also help rinse away bacteria.

Toothache Treatment at Azarko Dental Clinics

Treatment for a swollen tooth or gums will depend on the cause of the pain or swelling. It might include a filling, crown or root canal procedure. If you are diagnosed with gum disease, your dentist may recommend gum disease therapy or regular brushing. They will then perform a dental cleaning to remove any plaque and tartar. The dentist may prescribe medications or antibiotics to treat both the pain and any infection.

Since our dentists take a preventive approach to care, tooth extractions are a last resort after other treatment options have been exhausted or deemed not suitable. Common reasons for "pulling a tooth" include excessive damage to the tooth and problematic wisdom teeth. 

After the immediate issue is treated, your dentist will recommend maintaining an excellent oral care routine as a measure to prevent toothaches and tooth swelling. Brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and flossing once daily is a must.

If you have a swollen tooth or gums that need attention, contact our Edmonton dentists for an appointment as soon as possible.

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