When Troubled Teeth Tingle: What it Means When Your Teeth Begin to Tingle
Whenever you experience a toothache or tooth pain, you can be almost certain that something is wrong. However, besides pain and sensitivity, a tingling sensation is also a symptom of a troubled tooth.
If one or more of your teeth have begun to tingle, it might be time for a dental check-up. Tingling usually means that a tooth has suffered trauma of some sort.
Your Teeth Are Alive
Teeth are much more than just lumps of inert enamel. Each tooth contains a bundle of nerves and blood vessels called the dental pulp. This pulp allows your teeth to experience sensation. For example, if you bite into an ice cream, you soon regret doing so because of the jolt of pain you receive via your front teeth.
The dental pulp also lets you know when a tooth is in distress. A tingling sensation is a message from your tooth that something is wrong. Your tooth could be suffering from one of the following conditions.
Trauma Due to Bruxism
When a person grinds their teeth whilst sleeping at night, they are suffering from bruxism, also known as nocturnal grinding. Nocturnal grinding causes considerable damage to teeth. When you grit your teeth, for example, during heavy lifting, you are able to control the pressure you exert. However, whilst asleep, you have no such control and as a result, your teeth suffer damage.
Grinding not only wears away enamel, cracks teeth and damages fillings and other repair work, but it also irritates the dental pulp. When the pulp becomes irritated, the affected tooth may begin to tingle. This could indicate that the pulp is dying. If the pulp dies, it will begin to rot inside the tooth, causing an infection and subsequent dental abscess.
Trauma Caused by Over-Brushing
Enamel may be the hardest substance in the human body but that doesn’t mean a toothbrush cannot damage it. If you brush your teeth too vigorously each morning and night, you’ll wear away the enamel. Since your enamel protects the dental pulp, the less enamel there is, the more at risk the dental pulp is of becoming irritated.
Dentin, the spongy layer underneath enamel, contains thousands of tubules. This means that once the enamel layer has been worn away, temperatures, acids from food, and bacteria may irritate the nerve. Again, as a result, you may experience a tingling sensation in the affected tooth.
Faulty Fillings Cause Tingling
If a dental filling is faulty or in need of replacement, you may experience tingling. If the filling in question is new, that could mean that the filling is too high. In this case, your dentist can lower it so that it doesn’t interfere with your bite.
No matter what you suspect is causing your tooth, or teeth, to tingle, you should book a dental appointment just to be sure. If the dental pulp has become inflamed (pulpitis), then a dentist needs to perform a root canal on the tooth before the infection worsens.
Don’t take any chances with your teeth. If the dental pulp dies inside a tooth, it will rot, causing an infection and dental abscess, which can be painful as well as dangerous. Listen to your teeth and act quickly if you suspect the dental pulp is in distress.