If you have a tooth that has been bothering you for a while, you may find yourself wondering what you can and should do about it. Maybe it has gotten to the point where you just cannot stand it anymore, or maybe your tooth has gotten worse and you are finally ready to get some help. Whatever the case may be, it's important to get to know some of the steps you should take when you have a bad tooth. Then, you can be sure you are doing what is best for your tooth (and the rest of your oral health) going forward.
Try to Continue Brushing and Flossing Like Normal
One of the best things you can do for your tooth and your oral health as a whole is to continue to brush and floss as normal despite your problematic tooth. When a tooth hurts, it can be easy to try to avoid touching it with the toothbrush or with floss.
However, avoiding cleaning the tooth can cause more problems in the long run as it will encourage plaque growth and bacteria proliferation. Brush your teeth and floss as well as possible when you have a troublesome tooth, and you will be doing what is best for that tooth. You will also help to prevent the development of other troublesome teeth.
Contact Your Dentist Right Away
As soon as you can after your tooth pain gets to be a problem for you in your daily life, you should contact your dentist. While you may not like going to the dentist, allowing your tooth to become more painful is far worse than a trip to visit your dentist.
When you go to the dentist, you will likely have x-rays done and then the dentist will visually examine your tooth as well. The x-rays will help your dentist to see what is wrong with your tooth as well as the extent of the damage. For example, a rotten tooth may or may not have yet destroyed the pulp and the nerves of the tooth. The answer to whether it has or not will help to determine the course of action your dentist takes.
Know You May Need an Extraction
If your tooth has gotten to the point where your dental pulp and nerves are damaged, then the likely outcome will be a tooth extraction. Tooth extractions are often performed by dental surgeons. They will numb the area using a local anesthetic and carefully remove the tooth (to avoid damaging the teeth surrounding the infected tooth.
Once the tooth is removed, you will be able to go on about your day. However, most oral surgeons will recommend that you get some kind of tooth replacement to fill in the gap in your teeth. For some people, a simple denture will suffice. Others prefer a more permanent solution like a dental implant which is actually installed into the mouth with an artificial root to act like a real tooth. Talk to your dental surgeon about which option they believe is right for you for your tooth replacement.
Now that you know more about what to do if you have a bad tooth, you can be sure you take the proper steps to get your sore tooth taken care of.
For more information, contact a local dental surgeon.