Have you ever experienced excruciating pain in your mouth that made it difficult to eat or speak? If yes, then you know how unbearable it can be.
Mouth pain can affect anyone at anytime, and several common causes may lead to this discomfort. From toothaches to canker sores, there are various reasons why your mouth might be hurting.
This article discusses the seven common causes of mouth pain, their symptoms, and how to treat them. Understanding these causes can help you take preventative measures to avoid mouth pain or seek prompt treatment if you experience it.
So without further ado, let’s dive in and explore the reasons behind that unpleasant sensation in your mouth.
1. Wisdom teeth
Wisdom teeth, the third molars that emerge in late adolescence or early adulthood, can cause mouth pain if they become impacted or infected. Impacted wisdom teeth can push against adjacent teeth, leading to misalignment and pain. They can also develop infections or abscesses, causing pain, swelling, and inflammation. If you experience mouth pain, especially in the area of your wisdom teeth, it’s essential to seek dental care promptly. Delaying dental treatment can further aggravate the pain. So, you can look up wisdom teeth removal services near me to find a trusted professional who can provide safe and effective treatment to alleviate pain and prevent further dental problems.
2. Gum disease
Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a common oral health issue affecting the gums and the tissues surrounding the teeth. The condition arises due to plaque accumulation, a sticky bacterial film that forms on the gums and teeth. When left untreated, the disease can result in the gradual degradation of the tissues and supporting bone around the teeth, ultimately leading to tooth loss.
You can prevent gum disease by maintaining good oral hygiene habits, such as brushing and flossing regularly. If you have gum disease, your dentist may recommend a deep cleaning procedure called scaling and root planing, which can remove the buildup of bacteria on your teeth and gums. You can also visit your dentist regularly for medical examinations and cleanings.
3. Tooth Decay
Tooth decay is one of the most common causes of mouth pain. When the enamel on a tooth becomes damaged or worn down, bacteria can invade the underlying layers of the tooth, causing decay.
It can lead to a cavity, which can cause pain, especially when eating or drinking. If left untreated, the cavity can eventually lead to an infection, which can cause severe pain and require a root canal or a tooth extraction.
Tooth decay can be prevented by practicing good oral hygiene, such as brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist for regular medical examinations and cleanings.
4. Mouth Ulcers
Mouth ulcers are painful sores that can appear inside your cheeks, lips, or tongue. Its causes include factors like stress, injury, or certain medical conditions. Mouth ulcers usually go away on their own within a week or two, but they can be very uncomfortable.
Over-the-counter pain relievers and topical medications can help ease the pain of mouth ulcers. Avoiding spicy or acidic foods can also help prevent further irritation.
5. Oral Cancer
While less common than some of the other causes of mouth pain on this list, oral cancer is a dangerous condition that can cause significant discomfort and pain. Oral cancer can occur in any part of the mouth, including the tongue, gums, lips, and throat.
Symptoms of oral cancer can include mouth pain, difficulty swallowing, a lump or sore that does not heal, and changes in how the teeth fit together. Other symptoms can include numbness or tingling in the mouth or tongue and difficulty moving the jaw or tongue.
Treatment for oral cancer typically involves surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, depending on the location and severity of the cancer. Early detection is crucial in treating oral cancer, and see a doctor or dentist if you experience any persistent symptoms or changes in your mouth.
6. Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)
Temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJ, is a condition that affects the joint that connects your jawbone to your skull. It can cause pain and discomfort in the jaw, headaches, ear pain, and difficulty chewing.
The exact cause of TMJ is not always clear, but factors like stress, teeth grinding, and injury to the jaw are the chief causes. TMJ treatment may include exercises to strengthen the jaw muscles, medication to reduce pain and inflammation, and in some cases, surgery to repair or replace the joint.
7. Burning Mouth Syndrome
Burning mouth syndrome (BMS) is a condition that causes a burning sensation in the mouth that can last for several months or even years. It is most common in middle-aged and older women, and its exact cause is unknown. However, factors such as nutritional deficiencies, hormonal changes, and anxiety may play a role.
Symptoms of BMS can include a burning or tingling sensation in the tongue, lips, gums, or roof of the mouth. The pain may be constant or intermittent, and it can be accompanied by a dry mouth or altered taste sensation.
Treatment for BMS typically involves addressing any underlying factors contributing to the condition. It may include correcting nutritional deficiencies, managing stress and anxiety, and using medications to alleviate pain and discomfort. Your dentist or doctor may also recommend oral rinses, mouth sprays, or other products to help moisturize and soothe the mouth.
The causes of mouth pain can vary widely and can be as simple as a canker sore or as complex as an oral infection. Understanding the common causes of mouth pain is essential to effectively managing and treating this discomfort. You can prevent and manage mouth pain by maintaining good oral hygiene habits, staying hydrated, and seeking prompt medical attention when necessary. Additionally, regular dental check-ups can help detect and treat any underlying dental issues contributing to mouth pain. Overall, it is necessary to be proactive in caring for one’s oral health to prevent and manage mouth pain.