Painless Dental Problems
Most dental problems don’t cause pain at first. Only the inner part of a tooth contains nerves. The rest has no feeling. By fixing the tooth before decay reaches the nerve and makes it hurt, you can save yourself time, money, further dental damage, and of course, pain.
Where is a tooth’s nerve?
Nerves are in the tooth’s pulp which is deep in the center, in the pulp chamber. The pulp consists of blood vessels and connective tissue as well as nerves. This chamber extends through the tooth’s roots to the tip of the tooth in the jawbone. Here, the blood vessels enter the tooth from the body’s general circulatory system, and the nerves enter it from the body’s nervous system. When decay reaches the pulp, it’s a good thing that we can feel it, because now the tooth’s life is in danger, and so is our general health. The infection created by the bacteria and their toxins can spread into the circulatory system and cause problems elsewhere in the body.
This chamber running down the tooth’s root is called the root canal. When decay has destroyed the nerve and other tissues in this canal, a root canal procedure (endodontic therapy) is required. The only other choice is to extract the tooth.
Many dental problems can start out painless, including:
- Fractures and cracks
- Loosening fillings or crowns
When cracks and fractures expose the tooth’s nerve, they can be extremely painful. When they are more superficial you don’t notice them. But even if you feel no pain, the crack is allowing particles and bacteria to get inside your tooth, causing decay. Why allow decay to progress to the point where you need a root canal or lose your tooth?
It can be a simple and painless procedure to repair a cracked tooth promptly. You can preserve the tooth and avoid future pain and dental bills.
Amalgam fillings expand and contract when they come into contact with hot and cold foods and beverages. Often this will crack a tooth, and you can go for years with your tooth rotting away painlessly beneath the filling. But when that decay reaches the tooth’s nerve, you’ll suddenly feel it, and by then, a lot of unnecessary damage has been done.
A good way to help yourself avoid fractures or cracks in your teeth is to have your old metal fillings replaced by white composite fillings or porcelain inlays or onlays.