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What Happens to an Untreated Sensitive Tooth?

Posted on 6/15/2024 by Dr. Nick Raptou
man sitting on couch with a painful expression, with eyes closed, his hand on his cheekIt is important to address any dental issues in time, including tooth sensitivity. Ignoring tooth sensitivity for a long time can lead to complications such as receding gums and erosion of dental enamel, among others. Below are the possible consequences of ignoring tooth sensitivity for a long time.

Development of Tooth Decay

Tooth sensitivity often indicates an underlying issue that must be addressed. In most cases, the issue could be tooth decay. If the cause of the sensitivity is a cavity, leaving it untreated can allow the decay to progress further into the tooth, potentially leading to a toothache.

Full-blown Gum Disease

The other common cause of tooth sensitivity is gum disease. If the gums are inflamed and receding, the sensitive areas of the teeth become exposed. Failure to treat gum disease can progress to more severe forms, causing damage to the gums and supporting bone.

Lead to Tooth Abscess

In some cases, untreated tooth decay or trauma can lead to an infection at the root of the tooth. This infection can form a pocket of pus that can cause severe pain and swelling.

Broken Tooth

Minor fractures may be the cause of sensitive teeth. Without treatment, these cracks can worsen, leading to a broken tooth. A broken tooth not only causes pain but also requires more extensive treatment to repair, such as a crown or, in severe cases, extraction.

Development of Pulpitis

Pulpitis refers to inflammation of the dental pulp, the inner part of the tooth. The pulp contains nerves and blood vessels, which results in sensitivity. If left untreated, sensitive teeth can progress to pulpitis, causing intense, continuous tooth pain.

Possibility of Tooth Loss

If a tooth cannot be rescued through treatments such as fillings or root canals, extraction might be the only solution. Losing a tooth can result in various other complications, including challenges in chewing, speech, and movement of neighboring teeth. If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, contact our office today.

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