Should You Ignore Minor Discomfort In Your Teeth Or Gums?

Don’t let a ‘head in the sand’ approach to dental problems damage your oral health!

DentistAs we slowly come out of lockdown, everyday events will hopefully start to return to something more ‘normal’; accompanied by a few adjustments to acknowledge that the virus hasn’t gone away entirely.

One of the ‘easings’ is that our Chelmsford dental clinic is now open again for patient visits. There have been adjustments made to minimise any risk of infection and we hope that our patients feel at ease about visiting us again.

Initially, we will be treating those most in need but that doesn’t mean that we have forgotten about those of you looking forward to resuming or starting new treatments.

Niggly toothaches

It is likely that there will have been some of you who have had what you might consider to be minor problems with your teeth during lockdown. By this we mean those slight niggles and aches that don’t really feel that bad and can sometimes be ignored, or masked using an everyday painkiller. Whilst managing these symptoms at home was necessary whilst dental practices were closed, continuing this is far from a good idea.

At Blue Sky Dental we believe in early intervention where a problem exists. Dental problems virtually never go away of their own accord and if you have been in discomfort, however minor, you really need to see a dentist to have the problematic tooth checked out. There could be a number of reasons for your discomfort, with tooth decay probably being the most common; although gum disease is also a possibility.  If you choose not to have this checked, and treated where necessary, the problem will almost certainly become a lot worse as time goes by.

Early intervention

Assuming that your problem is related to tooth decay, it is usually a straightforward one to resolve. This is usually done using a filling, including our very discreet white fillings. If decay is detected early on, it will often involve the removal of a smaller amount of the tooth than if you wait until the problem is more advanced. So please always ask us to check any problems that you might be having as soon as you can.

Ignoring minor discomfort

It is worth taking a look at what may happen if you ignore a niggling toothache that you feel doesn’t warrant a visit to see your dentist.

Larger cavities

The most obvious thing that will happen if you ignore tooth decay is that the cavity will become larger as time goes by. It goes without saying that if you do this, you will require, at the very least, a larger filling. Although fillings offer a high level of strength, they can never be as good as a healthy natural tooth. There is also a good chance that you may experience a more painful toothache which could come on suddenly and leave you requiring an emergency dental appointment.

Collapsing tooth

If a cavity becomes too large, it will weaken the tooth and this could cause sections to break away. In addition to the fact that this could lead to uncomfortable sharp edges, it may also lead to further breakages. So please make sure to get the treatment you need as soon as you can.

Root canal infections

As acidic bi-products from food debris and bacteria erode the protective enamel on our teeth, the dentin layer beneath becomes exposed. This is a softer and more porous material which also allows access to the root canals of the tooth where the nerves and tiny blood vessels are located. In addition to toothache being much more likely at this stage, there is a real risk that the root canals will become infected and you may require specialist root canal treatment to try to save the tooth.

These are some of the main things that might happen if you don’t act promptly when you notice a dental problem. As our Chelmsford practice is now open again, please call us on 01245 211070 should you find yourself in this situation and need help quickly.

And finally….

It can’t have escaped your notice that the pubs are opening again this Saturday. Whilst this is good news for many and a sign that the virus is less prevalent in this area, we urge our patients who are planning to visit the pubs to do so sensibly. This is essential not only to help suppress the spread of the virus, but also to minimise the risk to our oral health through excess alcohol. Drinking to excess is bad for our general and oral health aswell as leading to more accidents when we over-indulge. So please do make sure to take extra care if you are planning a pub visit on ‘Super Saturday’!

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