Posted on 11/30/2018 by Dr. Bijan Modjtahedi
|Normally, you are on guard against painful, inflamed, or injured teeth – and that's a good thing! But when it comes to numbness, what's the harm?
Isn't the fact that it doesn't hurt anymore a good thing, and a sign of healing? Can't you just ignore the problem and it'll go away?
Don't Ignore The Warning Signs
It is imperative that you do not ignore a numb tooth, any more than you would ignore tooth pain. Oftentimes, this is the last warning your mouth will give you that a serious issue is developing, and ignoring it further may lead to permanent damage or even the death of your teeth.
The most common source of tooth numbness is illness or disease, where the nerve endings and roots of your teeth are dying due to bacteria or other sources of infection. This is normally preceded by considerable pain, and the relief of having that pain go away may mislead you into believing that the issue has healed, when instead the site is going into its death throes. Even worse than a dead tooth, the illness may spread to healthy teeth seeking a new food source, starting the cycle over.
Another source of tooth numbness that may be temporary or permanent, depending on the severity, is an injury – and it doesn't have to be a recent affliction. This is typically accompanied by pain that ebbs and flows, and may fade away entirely at times before returning in force. Sometimes, these heal themselves, but it is not reliable and should not be your first option.
Regardless of how recently or how considerable the numbness is, you should seek immediate diagnosis and help. In the best case scenario, we can give you the right treatment to ensure your tooth heals properly. In the worst scenario, you may have to have a root canal or even a full extraction to make sure that the tooth does not spread its disease to other teeth.
Please contact us promptly if you are currently experiencing any tooth numbness, or other ailments of the mouth. Do not ignore or celebrate the lack of pain until we have helped make certain that it is not part of a deeper, more threatening issue.