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Q: What do I do when I have a toothache?

Posted January 16, 2013 in Advice Column, Grimes

A: If you ever have had a toothache, it can be quite painful and frustrating. And most of the time, toothaches happen when you least expect it and when it is least convenient.

Obviously, we recommend you contact your dental office if it is during normal business hours and schedule an appointment to be seen. At that appointment, most likely a radiograph (X-ray) will be taken, an antibiotic prescribed,and treatment coordinated. But as mentioned before, most of the time a toothache occurs when it is inconvenient. Taking an anti-inflammatory, like ibuprofen, is a good start. Tylenol would be another option. Also, a soft diet will be a necessity, and try to avoid chewing on the side of pain. Swelling can also occur when a tooth has become infected. If swelling occurs in conjunction with tooth pain, be careful. You do not want the swelling and pain to get ahead of you. And do not be afraid to go to the emergency room. Unfortunately, when swelling occurs, it might be too late for antibiotics prescribed by your dentist to help. Therefore, a trip to the emergency room is a possibility.

Being proactive is the best remedy. Coming in every six months for your routine cleaning and exam is important to the health of your teeth. Plus, it is always fun to come to the dentist.

Information provided by Grove & Platt Dental Associates, PLC, 1541 S. Third St., Suite 300, 986-4001 and American Dental Association.

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