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What Will the Dentist Do if I Have a Toothache?

Hi, my name is Dr Warren Antonoff. I’m the Principal Dentist of Lifestyle Smiles. I was with a new patient Emma from Elsternwick yesterday. She came to see us because she had a pretty bad toothache. She was quite nervous when she came in, because she was in alot pain and she didn’t know what to expect. So I took my time, explained to her what we will do, before getting her out of pain. So I thought I’ll make a video sharing with you what you could expect from a dentist when you are in pain.

Toothache can be multifactorial. It could come from the tooth or the gum surrounding the tooth, your jaw or muscles, or sometimes even your sinuses. Sometimes when you have a toothache on the left-hand side, the source could be coming from the right-hand side. Sometimes your top tooth feels like it’s painful, but it’s actually your bottom tooth that has an issue. As you can see, it can be very tricky to diagnose the source of the toothache. So don’t be scared and think, omg the dentist will definitely pull that tooth out, a lot of times it’s not the case.

Of course, the most common reason of a toothache is a hole in the tooth, sometimes you can see it, other times it’s hidden. If that’s the case the dentist may numb you up, do a filling if it’s minor, or if it’s extensive, you may require a root canal or an extraction, which may or may not occur on the day.

A lot of the times however, the toothache may come from your gum, and if we just clean around that area, you’ll be okay. One common example of that is wisdom teeth pain. If your wisdom teeth are stuck and you only see half of it, then a minor gum infection is very common amongst young adults, and it could be the most excruciating pain. But after the dentist cleans around that area, the pain usually goes away after a few days.

Sometimes the toothache can be caused by a minor infection of your sinuses, this is also very common. Typical signs of a sinus infection are: when you bend down to tie your shoelaces, your top back teeth hurt, or the toothache occurred around the same time when you caught a cold or a flu. In cases like this, a course of antibiotics will usually do the trick.

On the other hand, if you have associated jaw or muscle pain with a toothache, then you may be grinding and clenching at night, so the dentist may prescribe you a splint to wear at night.

As you can see, there are many, many factors that can contribute to a toothache, and there are many different ways to get you out of pain. Of course, prevention is always better than cure, so make sure you visit your dentist every six months for a checkup to avoid any complicated issues.

I hope this gives you a better insight of what the dentist would do if you have a toothache. If you have a toothache and is located in Melbourne, we would love to help. Simply give us a call, direct message us on social media, or complete the enquiry form on our website. See you in the next video.

Note: All content and media on the Lifestyle Smiles website and social media channels are created and published online for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice.


Services we mentioned:

Emergency Dentistry

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Dr Warren Antonoff is the best dentist we’ve ever worked with, the clinic is clean with friendly staff. Waiting time was short, and the care taken into his work is top-notch. Will be using Lifestyle Smiles for the years to come.

Rick Y


Great experience! Dr Warren is a great dentist who is gentle and really experienced. He has a great bedside manner that puts patients at ease!

Joanne H


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