Dead Tooth

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What is a dead tooth, and what causes them? The tooth is alive with the help of the pulp, which is the innermost part of the tooth that consists of nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissues. When the pulp is damaged, the blood can be cut off, leaving the tooth to deteriorate and, as a result, die. It is important to keep in mind that there are possible ways to save the dead tooth if detected in time with proper treatment. Usually, a dead tooth occurs when there is trauma or tooth decay. When blood supply can no longer be transmitted throughout the tooth, it can cause the tooth to decay. The symptoms vary on each individual, so it is imperative that you suspect that you may have a dead or dying tooth to contact your dentist immediately to diagnose and assess your tooth. Signs such as:

  • Tooth pain
  • Gum pain
  • Discoloration of the tooth
  • Teeth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Bad breath
  • Foul tastes
  • Swelling or irritation of the gums

A dead tooth (or dying tooth) will always appear discolored from the rest. The first signs will be a pinkish tint color created from the blood vessels being ruptured and resulting in a greyish-black once the tooth finally is no longer functional. Please do not prolong the time to seek treatment. When your tooth is no longer viable, it is best to remove it before it develops and spreads infections to your other teeth.

There are treatments available that your dentist will be more than happy to help maintain your oral health. Depending on your circumstance, an extraction is needed to remove the tooth entirely to prevent any risk of infections and fix it with a fixed bridge or dental implant. If the tooth can be saved, the dentist can provide a root canal treatment to salvage the tooth. Your dentist will prefer to preserve the natural teeth whenever it is possible. To avoid the extremity of the situation, remember that it is highly recommended to schedule your dental appointment for a routine check-up every six months. The earlier you catch the changes in your teeth in early detection, the better the outcome is to save your natural teeth.

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