Your teeth are made up of both hard and soft tissues, including the enamel, dentin, the root (often referred to as the “pulp” or “nerve”), and bone. While you do not feel pain on your teeth as you would most another place on your body, your teeth combine both hard and soft living tissue. When your teeth are damaged, there is a possibility that they can die. Below you will find information on what causes a dead tooth and what you need to do about it.
Causes of a Dead Tooth
Because your teeth are living, they are susceptible to injury and infection. A traumatic injury or accident involving your tooth can cause it to die. A trauma usually involves blunt force to your teeth, which can cause your tooth to die slowly or quickly depending on the type and severity of the injury. Poor dental hygiene is also a big culprit for a dead tooth. This is because poor dental hygiene can lead to cavities, which can cause an infection if left untreated. Once the root of your tooth gets infected, it can eventually die without proper intervention.
Symptoms of a Dead Tooth
The pulp of your teeth requires a steady blood supply as it keeps your tooth healthy and living. However, if your tooth becomes infected or suffers severe trauma that blood supply can be cut off, which will eventually lead to your tooth dying. Below are some of the common symptoms that you may have a dead tooth.
- Pain in your teeth or gums
- Discoloration on the tooth that is dying (it will look different from the rest of your teeth)
- Bad breath
- Swelling around your gum line (especially near where the dead tooth is)
- Bad taste in your mouth
Diagnosis and Treatment
A dentist can identify a dying tooth just by looking at it or by getting an X-ray of your mouth. You can make a routine dental appointment, which often includes a cleaning, X-rays, and any unique treatments you may require based on your specific dental needs. It is recommended that you see the dentist every six months, so if your tooth is dying, it should be caught during these appointments. However, if you suffer from an injury or think your tooth is dying or dead, schedule an appointment earlier.
If your tooth is dying, but not yet dead, your dentist may be able to save it. However, this is heavily dependent on how early you get in for treatment. A root canal will keep your natural tooth intact and involves cleaning the infection out of the pulp of your tooth. Once the infection has been removed, your tooth will be sealed up and a permanent filling will cover the opening used to remove the infection. If your tooth is dead, it will require extraction. This means that your natural tooth will be removed. It is vital to remove a dead tooth because the infection can spread to your other teeth and other parts of your body. Tooth extraction Los Angeles can help maintain the integrity of the rest of your teeth and keep your mouth healthy. Your natural tooth can be replaced with an implant, bridge, or denture.
Endodontist Los Angeles
If you are concerned that your tooth is dead or dying, contact Dr. Maz Ebrahimi at Maz Endodontics. Dr. Maz Ebrahimi and his team are focused on putting the patient first and ensuring you leave with your dental issues taken care of. He and his provide a wide variety of dentistry services, including tooth extraction. Contact endodontist Los Angeles today to schedule an appointment!