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Posts for tag: tooth pain

By Scott A. Terry, DDS
July 09, 2020
Category: Oral Health

Tooth pain can range from mild to severe, but even if your toothache is minor, you should still see a dentist as soon as possible, before the problem worsens. Dr. Scott A. Terry is a North Vernon, IN family dentist. He can diagnose the cause of your tooth pain and treat it effectively.

Toothache and Accompanying Symptoms

North Vernon residents should call Dr. Terry immediately if they experience any of the following symptoms:

  • Pain in the teeth, gums, or jaw
  • Bleeding gums
  • Redness and inflammation of the gums
  • A bad taste in the mouth
  • Pus around the teeth or gums
  • A loose tooth
  • Tooth loss

Causes of Tooth Pain

One of the most common causes of toothache is tooth decay. Your mouth is full of bacteria and while some are beneficial, some are harmful and can cause tooth decay. This happens when bacteria combine with sugary substances from food and beverages and forms a film of plaque that sticks to the teeth and gum line. Over time, plaque produces acids that eat through your tooth enamel. If left untreated, plaque will eventually harden into tartar and cause gum disease. Be aware that acidic diets from soft drinks and sports drinks can cause tooth decay and ruin the enamel as well. If your family dentist catches the early signs of tooth decay, it can be treated before it creates a cavity and causes tooth pain.

Other causes of tooth pain include:

  • Gum disease: Because it causes inflammation of the gums, periodontitis can be painful. If it is not treated promptly, it can result in receding gums, loose teeth, and deterioration of the bone that holds teeth in place.
  • Inflammation of the Tooth Pulp: This condition can be caused by tooth decay or trauma to the tooth. It results in pain when chewing and sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures.
  • Cracked tooth: Cracks or fractures can cause sharp pain when biting and chewing.

Tooth pain is considered a dental emergency and you should contact your family dentist as soon as you experience problems. If you have a dental emergency, you can call us on (812) 346-4500.


When they’re introducing a new movie, actors often take a moment to pay tribute to the people who helped make it happen — like, you know, their dentists. At least that’s what Charlize Theron did at the premiere of her new spy thriller, Atomic Blonde.

"I just want to take a quick moment to thank my dentists," she told a Los Angeles audience as they waited for the film to roll. "I don’t even know if they’re here, but I just want to say thank you."

Why did the starring actress/producer give a shout-out to her dental team? It seems she trained and fought so hard in the action sequences that she actually cracked two teeth!

“I had severe tooth pain, which I never had in my entire life,” Theron told an interviewer from Variety. At first, she thought it was a cavity — but later, she found out it was more serious: One tooth needed a root canal, and the other had to be extracted and replaced with a dental implant — but first, a bone grafting procedure was needed. “I had to put a donor bone in [the jaw] to heal,” she noted, “and then I had another surgery to put a metal screw in there.”

Although it might sound like the kind of treatment only an action hero would need, bone grafting is now a routine part of many dental implant procedures. The reason is that without a sufficient volume of good-quality bone, implant placement is difficult or impossible. That’s because the screw-like implant must be firmly joined with the jawbone, so it can support the replacement tooth.

Fortunately, dentists have a way to help your body build new bone: A relatively small amount of bone material can be placed in the missing tooth’s socket in a procedure called bone grafting. This may come from your own body or, more likely, it may be processed bone material from a laboratory. The donor material can be from a human, animal or synthetic source, but because of stringent processing techniques, the material is safe for human use. Once it is put in place your body takes over, using the grafted material as a scaffold on which to build new bone cells. If jawbone volume is insufficient for implants, it can often be restored to a viable point in a few months.

Better yet, when grafting material is placed in the tooth socket immediately after extraction, it can keep most of the bone loss from occurring in the first place, enabling an implant to be placed as soon as possible — even before the end of a movie’s shooting schedule.

Will Atomic Blonde prove to be an action-movie classic? Only time will tell. But one thing’s for sure: When Charlize Theron walks down the red carpet, she won’t have to worry about a gap in her smile.

If you have questions about bone grafting or dental implants, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Dental Implant Surgery” and “Immediate Dental Implant.”