Dental Issues: Diagnosing Common Problems

If you have a major issue with your teeth, you should naturally go to a dentist, such as Sarah M. LYNCH DMD. This is especially true if you suspect you may be developing periodontal disease, because many conditions can be halted and even reversed if caught early. However, some common problems may not necessitate an immediate visit to the dentist.

Dark Spots, Pain

Quite often the source of mild or throbbing pain is a cavity. Cavities occur when oral bacteria feed on food particles trapped between and around your teeth. They produce acid that eventually wears away at the tooth enamel. You may start noticing a dark spot at that time. When the acid gets down to the sensitive dentin of the tooth, you'll feel mild to throbbing pain, depending on how far along the process is. Going to a dentist as soon as you notice dark spots or pain will save more of your tooth enamel in the long run.

Excruciating, Intermittent Pain

There is little worse than bad tooth pain, and you may be relieved when yours goes away. However, as Dear Doctor points out, excruciating but intermittent tooth pain can be a sign that the pulp and nerve of your tooth is dying. This is often caused by trauma, infection or tooth decay. You may need a root canal to solve the problem before you lose the tooth.

Loose Tooth

If you've suffered a blow to the face, then the cause of your loose tooth is obvious. However, two other conditions can cause loose teeth. The first is periodontal disease, which can cause bone loss around the tooth. In this case, e with normal biting and chewing, the tooth remains loose in the socket. Conversely, excessive force during biting can cause the tooth to become loose. Typically this occurs when you grind your teeth at night. Any loose tooth requires treatment, so it's important to see a dentist as soon as you notice the problem.

Bad Breath

Technically called halitosis, bad breath is both a tooth and mouth problem. Besides the obvious causes, such as smoking and food consumption, halitosis is commonly caused by dry mouth or plaque. When your mouth becomes overly dry, there's not enough saliva to clear out the odors. Likewise, an excess of plaque buildup can cause bad breath. A thorough cleaning at the dentist twice a year removes plaque. If you do this and drink plenty of water yet still have halitosis, there may be an underlying disease causing the problem.

Talk to your dentist about any dental concerns to keep them from becoming worse.