Tooth woes can do the same, and it can be confusing to decide whether to ignore them or seek help.
Well, in all honesty, a face to face check up and an x-ray or two are usually needed for a true diagnosis.
But being the tooth whisperer (*chuckle*) that I am, here are some red flags–i.e. the I-can’t-affort-to-let-THIS-get-outta-hand–that require immediate attention:
1. Sensitivity to heat
While it’s not uncommon to get a zinger or two with cold things like ice water or ice-cream, its inconvenient though not often serious. But ooh boy if you get a zinger with your hot coffee or soup, it’s time to take notice.
Heat is a signal, loud and clear, that something is brewing, like a cavity or a root canal-to-be.
2. Lumps or bumps
Notice something new (to you) that wasn’t there before, on your lip, gums or tongue? If it doesn’t go away within a week or so on its own, get it checked.
It may be nothing serious, at least that’s what we hope for. Then again, it could. And there’s only one way to find out–by getting it looked at and possibly biopsied.
‘Biopsy’ may be a scary word, but all it is is getting a sample of your cheek or tongue using a swab or a brush for a closer look. The last thing you want to do is ignore it, and it turn out to be oral cancer.
The same goes for any red or white spots, even if they’re not lumpy or bumpy.
3. Throbbing toothache
A dull and/or throbbing ache almost always is an infection waving to you, Yoo hoo, I’m here!
Left on its own to dilly dally, infection can keep spreading, painful or not. Before long, it can spread far enough to be life-threatening (and yes, an infection from something as small as a tooth can do that).
On a side note, I’ll add that it is perfectly possible to have a cavity, a lump or an infection happily brewing inside your body, and IT NOT HURT.
Then again, neither does dangerously high blood pressure or cholesterol . . . at first.
Out of sight may mean out of mind, but not necessarily out of trouble.
We strongly advocate prevention and oral wellness, but if you have an issue that’s misbehaving, let us know.
Prevention doesn’t just mean not allowing a problem to happen, it also means tackling it early if it does, thus making it able to be treated faster, before it gets painful and with more conservative means, and usually easier on your wallet.
(214) 522-3110 www.raodentistry.com
Have questions? Call or email us via our website, or ask in the comments!