' What is a dead tooth – symptoms and treatment options

Teeth are living things and they are likely to die. A tooth mainly dies because of physical trauma. Such trauma could be a cracked tooth or intense cavity on the tooth. A dead tooth is no longer able to receive fresh supply of blood. There are various symptoms of a dead tooth and methods of treatment. In treatment, there are dead teeth that can be reclaimed and those that cannot.

When one opens their mouth, you can see the teeth crown, which is the end of a tooth. The base of a tooth on the other hand is known as the root and it is underneath the bone and gums in the mouth. There are three basic layers for every tooth. The enamel is the outermost layer while the inner layer near the root is known as cementum. The third layer is known as the dentin and it is found inside the cementum and the enamel. There is a pulp beneath the dentin layer and it is made of blood vessels, nerves and additional tissue. This pulp is mainly referred to as a nerve. However, the blood vessels and nerves in a tooth partly exist through the roots in the bones and gums. When the tooth layers rot or get cracked, the pulp gets harmed. The harm could lead to gases in the gum, liquid pressure, pus or germs around the harmed area, resulting in infection. The gum then swells and you may experience great pain that may be an indication that you have a dead tooth.

What are a dead tooth signs and symptoms?

Many people will mainly experience tooth discoloration if they have a dead tooth. It is one of the first signs that a tooth is dead and no longer able to acquire fresh blood supply. Another common sign of a dead tooth is pain in the gums or tooth.

Teeth generally have a white color when they are healthy. This color may appear in a different shades depending on factors such as diet and hygiene. Habits such as smoking and consumption of foods such as coffee or red wine may stain your teeth and cause the original white shade to appear differently.

When discoloration occurs on a tooth as a dead nerve in tooth symptom, the color of the affected tooth will look different from the rest of the teeth. A tooth that is dying is likely to appear slightly yellow, slightly brown or grey or black. The dead nerve in tooth is also likely to appear as though it is bruised. The tooth continues to decay and discolor as the nerve dies.

Another symptom of a dead or dying teeth is pain. However, not all people with this condition experience pain. The pain is mild for some and may be intense for others. The cause of the pain is the dying nerve or infection around the dying teeth. However, not all tooth or gum pain is an indication of a dying or dead tooth.

Other signs that indicate a dying or dead tooth may include bad taste in the mouth, bad breath or swelling of your gum line area. It is advisable to visit a dentist as soon as you begin to experience any of the signs of dying teeth. A diagnosis is offered and depending on the symptoms, there are treatment methods for dead teeth.

What causes a tooth to die?

When a tooth is injured or traumatized, it is highly likely to die. A tooth can get injured or traumatized when one is hit in the mouth by a heavy object or when one hits the mouth against something. Dying of a teeth may occur fast or slowly. It may take days, months or years for a tooth to die.

Poor dental hygiene is also a cause for death in teeth. When your mouth hygiene is not good, teeth are likely to have cavities, which may completely destroy teeth if they is not treated. Cavities start from the enamel and they go all the way to the pulp with time. It is normally painful when the pulp has cavities. Having cavities in the pulp leads to the pulp getting infected and this stops blood supply to the pulp causing a tooth to die.

Dead tooth diagnosis

A teeth x-ray during a normal visit to the dentist can reveal that you have a dying or dead tooth. When you experience any of the dying or dead tooth symptoms such as discoloration, visit a dentist and get examined. Even when you get any form of tooth injury, it is advisable to visit a dentist for examination as your tooth or teeth may have been seriously damaged. Early diagnosis for dying teeth helps with the treatment.

Treating a dying tooth

A dead tooth should be treated as soon as possible. When one tooth dies due to lack of treatment, the bacteria is not treated and may spread to other teeth leading to loss of more teeth. The bacteria may also affect the gums and jawbone if left untreated. The main treatment methods for dying teeth are root canal and tooth extraction.

Root canal treatment

Root canal treatment is carried out when the condition of the dying teeth can be fixed. Through this method, you can keep your tooth and have it fine again. Root canal is a medical procedure that entails opening of the affected tooth, removing the pulp and cleaning the bacteria or infection out. The pulp is removed using small instruments and the entire procedure is carried out by professional dentists. After completely removing the infection, there is a small space left, which is replaced with a permanent filling. The dentist also fills and seals the roots once the infection is taken out.

Normally after root canal, you will require a crown. The crown is especially important if the tooth was largely filled or if the enamel got damaged. As time goes by, teeth that have gone through the root canal procedure are likely to get really hard.

For this reason, crowns are recommended for the teeth after root canal to help mainly with chewing and grinding. The crown is a form of covering that is made to your mouth after root canal. A part of the tooth that is left will need to be filed for the crown to be fit over the tooth permanently. If your dying tooth has become discolored, a crown can be made to resemble the good teeth that surround it. However, not all root canal patients require a crown. Tooth bleaching may help if you have tooth discoloration on your affected tooth. Your dentist may recommend using a porcelain veneer to cover your treated tooth. There are various aesthetic treatment methods and you can inquire about the best method from a professional dentist.

Extraction of the affected tooth

In the event where your dying tooth is seriously damaged by the bacteria, it might not be possible to restore it. In this situation, the dentist may recommend that the dying tooth be totally removed. The procedure ensures that the tooth is fully extracted. This leaves a space for you to replace the tooth, either with a denture, implant, or bridge. This may be quite catastrophic when it comes to dead front tooth. You can ask your dentist to fill you in with adequate information on the cost of extracting the tooth or whether you will need to replace the tooth with time. Also ask whether a tooth replacement requires any unique care from your other teeth.

Managing the pain

Having a dying tooth is not easy and is especially worse when you are experiencing pain. There are home remedies that you can use when a tooth is causing you excessive pain. You can consider avoiding hot drinks as a way to manage your pain. Hot beverages increase the pain by increasing inflammation. You can also purchase and consume anti-inflammatory medicine. Ibuprofen is for instance good for this type of pain. You can also manage the pain by avoiding hard food. While biting the hard food, the damaged nerves could be worsened and this will cause you more pain.

You should note that these home remedies are not a form of treatment for a dying tooth. Even with the remedies, it is very important for you to visit a dentist as soon as you can for professional treatment. The tips are only useful in making the pain you may be experienced become manageable.

Preventing a dead tooth

It is not easy to prevent dead teeth. However, it is likely for people to lower the risk of having dead teeth. Since cavities and bacteria are mainly a result of poor oral hygiene, maintaining good hygiene is a major way of reducing the risk of dead teeth. It is advisable that you brush your teeth at least two times a day and also floss the mouth at least one time in a day. This helps to kill bacteria and reduce cavity, keeping you safe from infection and dead tooth.

Another way that you can use to reduce the risk of dead teeth is by visiting a dentist frequently. Preferably, you should go to the dentist at least two times annually for check up and preventive dental care. This helps to tackle issues that may exist with your teeth as a way of preventing them from getting worse. Wearing a mouth guard also helps to reduce the risk of having a dead tooth. If you are engaging in activities that put you at risk of mouth or tooth injury, wear a mouth guard.

Having a health diet and maintaining it always will also help you avoid dead tooth. Avoid sugary food to lower the risk of tooth decay and bacteria. Drink plenty of water, especially after eating to clear away any bacteria. If you suspect anything wrong with your teeth, take precaution measures and see a dentist as early as possible.

A tooth is dead when there is no blood that is flowing through it. This means that the tooth has no life in it, it is no longer useful due to the dead nerve in the tooth. A dead tooth can also be called a necrotic pulp or a non-vital tooth. When a tooth dies, whether you remove it or not, with time it will fall out on its own as it loses the ability to hold and stay put. It is, however, advisable to have a dead tooth removed as compared to having it fall off on its own. A dead tooth can lead to more infections and dead teeth and this is quite dangerous. In case a tooth dies and you remain unaware about it, it may take days, weeks, month or in some cases years for it to fall out. The period depends on the intensity of the damage that led to the death of the tooth. If it is determined that the tooth is dead, have it extracted immediately to save the other teeth from infection.

Understand that you cannot simply look on a tooth and determine that it is dead. It is, therefore, advisable to visit a professional dentist for professional diagnosis. This will work better than guessing about it. Mainly, when you experience pain and distress in your tooth, go to a dentist and get checked. Most people don’t know much about oral health and it may be tough for them to determine their oral health issues without the help of a professional.
People mainly experience pain when the pulp is having an infection. A painful tooth also mainly indicates that a nerve is dying. Dead nerve in a tooth means that the tooth is dead. Unlike the belief of many that dead nerve in a tooth makes one feel nothing, the pain experienced comes from the nerve endings on the exterior of the tooth or the periodontal membrane.

After how long does an affected tooth die?

A tooth takes some time to die when it starts to decay or when it gets damaged. The period of time it takes for a tooth to die depends on how serious the damage or level of decay is. The time may be in days, weeks, months and sometimes years. When the tooth begins to discolor or darken, it is highly likely that it is about to die out. When teeth are fully healthy, they have a good white shade. The shade, however, differs based on the factors earlier discussed in this article. Maintain good oral hygiene that ensures you can easily spot darkening or discoloring of any of your teeth. Mostly, people cannot tell much about how to fix a dead tooth but you can easily note the symptoms and seek professional help.

When your tooth is affected and your oral hygiene is poor, it is highly likely that your tooth will die quickly. Poor hygiene may entail smoking or intake of food that affects your teeth such as a lot of sugar. When your tooth looks different from the other teeth, it is highly likely that it is dying and you need medical assistance. It may appear dark, light brown or gray or also yellowish. Trying to manage these symptoms at home is very risky. Unfortunately, when it comes to teeth, it is not easy to self-medicate or treat yourself without the guidance of a professional dentist. Failing to seek medical treatment for a dying tooth could cause you a lot of damage.

Leaving a dying or dead tooth in your mouth unattended does not only put the other teeth at risk of infection, but may put you in serious pain. The infection of other teeth actually takes time to happen. However, there are other effects that you may want to avoid. A dying tooth will make your teeth arrangement look unattractive. Most of us care about our appearance and how our teeth look like when we smile or laugh. A dying tooth may be discolored and lead you to have a marred appearance. Do not shy away because of cost of treatment. Seek advice on cost of treatment, including root canal cost, dental implants cost and dental crown cost and prepare for the type of treatment that is recommended for you. Understand that a dead tooth, especially at the front will appear different and you do not want to have a dead front tooth that can easily be seen as unattractive.

A damaged tooth that is dying is not only painful, but also quite dangerous. A dead front tooth my impact negatively on your appearance. It may appear harmless at first, especially if the pain is manageable with simple painkillers. However, it may result to other teeth getting infected or damaged with time. The dying teeth do not affect other teeth immediately but they may if left untreated for a while. You may also develop problems with the gum and jawbone when a dead nerve in tooth is not treated or removed. Maintain healthy oral hygiene and make an effort to get regular dental check ups to avoid dead teeth. We offer professional consultation services to help you understand your dental health. Reach out to us for professional consultation on oral hygiene and teeth care.

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