If you experience a dental emergency, such as a knocked-out tooth or severe oral pain, you know that you need to see your dentist right away. But if you notice smaller concerns in your smile, you might feel tempted to ignore them. However, these changes in your oral health could point to major underlying dental problems that warrant urgent evaluation and treatment from your dentist.
Do not delay telling your dentist about changes in your smile, even if they seem tolerable or minor. Discover three examples of dental problems that seem small but may require urgent treatment from your dentist when you read on.
If you have ever bitten into a food item and felt a sharp pain, then you are familiar with tooth sensitivity. This painful sensation occurs when the enamel, the outer layer of the tooth, wears down and exposes underlying nerves in the tooth. If an external stimulus, such as food, touches these nerves, you can feel intense pain.
Because this pain fades quickly after you remove the stimulus, you might think the symptom is not a big deal. But if you ignore the problem, you might notice changes in your eating habits, such as avoiding that specific tooth. This could lead to bite problems and other issues.
Plus, tooth sensitivity might happen because a dental issue is hurting the enamel. Cavities, for instance, might make a tooth feel sensitive as decay damages the dental structure. The issue will worsen without intervention from your dentist. You will need your dentist to replace weakened enamel and relieve tooth sensitivity.
You might see bleeding in your gums for an acute reason, such as rigorous teeth brushing or flossing. But if you see redness, bleeding, or soreness in your gums on a chronic basis with no clear cause, you might have gum disease.
This infection in the gum tissue often presents with irritation and inflammation in the gums in its early stage. As the infection progresses without dental treatment, bacteria will spread from the gums to the teeth and jawbone too. You could suffer significant damage to your smile, including tooth loss.
Gum disease does not go away on its own and is easier to treat when diagnosed early. So do not delay seeking periodontal therapy from your dentist.
Chronic Bad Breath
Most people will develop bad breath after eating certain foods. But your oral hygiene routine should wash away the residues that give your breath this odor. If the bad breath persists, then you could have an underlying oral health issue.
For instance, bacterial build-up in the gum pockets due to gum disease will give off a foul smell that affects your breath. So not only will you feel self-conscious about this symptom, but it could pose a serious threat to your oral health. Make sure you contact your dentist about this problem, even if it seems minor.