Toothaches (Podcast)

Daniel Vinograd

Hello, this is Dr. Daniel Vinograd in San Diego, California, biological dentist, and I just wanted to touch base on pain, particularly tooth and gum pain. Basically, I wanted to give the listener an idea of what are some of the expectations and a little bit of what dentists like myself would ask in order to assess the type of pain and what it could mean. So, obviously, my disclaimer is that any of this is just to give you ideas so that you know when it is more likely that you need help or not, but, obviously, ultimately you have to have a proper diagnosis by your dentist.

So, pain is, it sounds like pain is pain, but it really, it could be quite nuanced. First of all, we have to try to decide which kind of pain or what flavor of pain, if you will, your experiencing. We could kind of find out what it is that we may be looking for. If you are having pain that is provoked, in other words, touching of tooth the tooth or gum, cold or heat, makes it hurt, but as soon as this provoking agent disappears, the pain goes away, are usually less worrisome that if you would have unprovoked pain which is pain that would come all of a sudden. As a matter of fact, one of the indications for immediate treatment is when you have unprovoked pain of great intensity, the kind that would wake you up at night. That, I would actually seek immediate help for.

Aside from that, we could talk a little bit about the difference between hot and cold. Usually, when you’re having discomfort with cold, you have some sensitivity, and it’s usually not incredibly worrisome. Hot would be a little bit more concerned about. As I said, the most important thing would be if it’s provoked or unprovoked.

Another differentiation that you can make is whether you are having acute sharp pain or if it’s throbbing pain. Sometimes, I’ll describe the differences with pain like you would be hearing a flute or a drum. The throbbing pain is more like a stomachache. The acute pain is more like a headache, and usually the acute headache type-pain, it’s not a headache, it’s in your mouth, it would be more descriptive of toothache or bone ache while throbbing pain is usually an indicator for gum pain. Obviously, in addition to pain, you would look for other symptoms. If you have bleeding or pus coming out, obviously those would be other symptoms, but you would like at them in conjunction to the pain.

Anyway, anytime that you have any concerns, you should call your health professional and just thought I’d give you a little bit of what some of the indicators are for pain. Typically, when patients come to the office and they’re not sure what tooth or what is paining them, I’d likely tap on the teeth to try to really ascertain which tooth it is, and obviously if there is one particular tooth that responds to the tapping, we call it percussion, that will give you a better idea of what tooth you are looking at.

Again, sometimes when it’s diffused, pain can be projecting itself into other areas. We call this referred pain. So, sometimes it is a little bit tricky where the pain will start at some area, but you will feel it radiating into some other area. That’s because we obviously have a network of nerves throughout the mouth that are connected.
So, I hope that this was helpful to you, and I hope that you have a great day.

Feel free to call or e-mail with any questions: (619) 640-5100 / daniel@drvinograd.com

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  1. […] The possible causes of your toothache according to Dr. Vinograd – and how he can help relieve your tooth ache. San Diego Toothache Relief – (619) 630-7174.  […]

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Dr. Daniel Vinograd, DDS |
10450 Friars Rd, San Diego, CA 92120 |
Phone: 619-630-7174    •    Dr. Vinograd, DDS, is a Dentist in San Diego, CA, offering services as a periodontist, and providing teeth whitening, dental crowns, invisalign, implants, lumineers, dentures, root canals, holistic, family and cosmetic dentistry.


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