Sometimes we wonder if a dental problem is cosmetic or a warning sign of something serious. There are other times we deal with the aches and repeated pain, wondering if it will go away. In some cases, a problem evolves over time and we don’t realize it is a serious issue in the making. Here are four clear signs you should see your dentist immediately.
Serious pain is always a reason to see your dentist immediately. Tooth pain suggests that a cavity has reached the root and is causing serious pain; if this pain deadens, that doesn’t mean the infection is gone but that it has killed the root and likely lingers as an infection in the mouth, continuing to cause damage. Sudden pain after eating something suggests either a jaw problem or broken tooth. If you have serious pain, whether continually or only when you bite down, visit a Barrie dental office as soon as possible.
Red, Bleeding Gums
Red is bad, bleeding is bad, and combined this suggests that your gums are in in an advanced state of inflammation. You’re prone to gums like this receding from your teeth, allowing them to become loose or cavities to form at the root. If your red, bleeding gums are accompanied by chronic bad breath, your mouth is in bad shape, and you need to see a dentist while the issue can be reversed. In the meantime, keep brushing your teeth and your gums, even if it hurts to do so.
If you’re pregnant, see a dentist for more frequent cleanings and better care for your teeth; don’t write off bleeding gums as just another sign of pregnancy. If you’re in your late teens or early twenties, red, inflamed gums in the back of the mouth may mean you aren’t taking proper care of your teeth or you have a wisdom tooth about to erupt. If plaque is accumulating around the area, this could lead to an infection.
Chronic Sores in the Mouth
Chronic sores in your mouth are those that last longer than a cold sore or keep coming back. Chronic sores could be a sign of an infection, whether the result of giving someone oral sex or a depressed immune system unable to control casual infections. Or you may have picked up hand, foot and mouth disease from your toddler. Some parents end up picking up thrush from their infant. If you keep developing sores in your mouth, talk to your dentist. It could be an early warning sign of diabetes, especially if accompanied by constant bad breath. It may also be a sign of an autoimmune disorder, since canker sores will increase in frequency and severity if the body is fighting itself instead of bacteria and viruses in the mouth.
If you have used chewing tobacco or smoked, the appearance of a sore or growth that is getting larger should be reported to your dentist, since this could be cancerous.
Continual Tooth Sensitivity
If your teeth recently became sensitive to heat or cold, this suggests that you’re about to start suffering tooth pain due to a cavity or a filling is failing. When your enamel is thinning due to chronic exposure to stomach acid as a result of acid reflux or tooth grinding (bruxism), tooth sensitivity means you need to control the problem before you wear down your teeth.
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, then you should consider seeing a dentist immediately. Most dentists will be more than happy to offer a free consultation and come up with solutions based on your needs and budget.