Frequently-Asked Questions About Toothaches

If you’ve ever had a toothache, your first and foremost question might be, “How do I cure it?” In most cases, though, the answer to that question isn’t so simple. Teeth hurt for a number of reasons, ranging from dental damage to a developing dental disease (tooth decay or gum disease), and the “cure” for your toothache will be unique to your situation. To help clarify the mystery behind your discomfort, your Grand Prairie dentist, Dr. Quinn Smith, answers a few frequently-asked questions about toothaches and how to make them go away.

What causes teeth to hurt?

When the enamel surrounding your teeth grows thin and weak, either from poor hygiene or habits like grinding your teeth, the main structure of your tooth, called dentin, is exposed. Dentin is porous, and when irritated, it sends sensory information to the nerves at the center of your tooth. Usually, toothaches occur due to a cavity, crack, or fracture that has exposed the tooth’s more sensitive structures underneath its enamel.

Will my toothache resolve itself if I ignore it?

Even if you could stand the discomfort of your toothache, you shouldn’t challenge yourself by seeing how long it takes before you give in. If the pain is the result of a growing cavity, caused by tooth decay, time will only allow the infection to spread, and the toothache will grow worse.

How can I prevent toothaches in the future?

Since tooth sensitivity happens for several reasons, prevention depends on preventing the various issues that cause teeth to hurt. Typically, this means practicing good hygiene, like brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice every day, and visiting your dentist as often as recommended for routine dental checkups and cleanings.


Dr. Quinn Smith is a well-respected and highly experienced general, restorative, and family dentist in Grand Prairie, TX. He takes a patient-first approach that starts from the moment patients enter our Pecan Tree Dental office, and he offers a three-year guarantee on all dental work that he performs. Whether you and your family are new or returning patients, you can schedule a consultation or your next appointment with Dr. Smith by contacting us at (972) 262-5111.