Dental pain or toothache is a fairly common condition and almost everyone is affected by it at some point in their lives. Despite it being a common occurrence, the treatment methods for dental pain cam vary from simple homemade remedies to drugs and medications as well as simple dental procedures such as a filling, root canal treatment or tooth extraction.
Each of these treatment methods focuses on pain management, although the dental procedures aim to remove the cause of the pain so that the patient does not experience any pain in the tooth concerend. The best part about dental pain is that after treatment, patients can avoid a recurrence of the same by taking certain preventive measures.
That said, the right treatment option for the patient's toothache will depend on the cause of his/her toothpain, which will be ascertained by the dentist through the analysis of the symptoms as well as by conducting diagnostic tests such as X-rays. Patients should know that dental pain is easily treatable.
The first stage of treatment of dental pain is the administration of drugs. These drugs are mostly NSAIDs or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen or aspirin that help in bringing down the pain as well as the associated swelling.
These drugs are administered orally and its generally recommended to take it after a meal. In certain cases, such as when the pain is caused by bacterial infections or tooth decay, dentists may prescribe antibiotics too.
If the toothace is severe and caused by a cavity, the patient may have to go for a simple procedure known as filling. In this procedure, the dentist simply fills the cavity of the particular tooth or teeth with the help of dental drilling machine and a cotton swab. This procedure is virtually painless. In certain cases, patients may need to resort a more definitive treatment iin order to get rid of dental pain and root canal treatment is one of them.
This treatment can be slightly painful, which is why local anesthesia is administered before te dentist can start. In this procedure, the dentist will make an opening in the affected tooth's crown and use tiny instruments to clean the root canal and make space for a filling. After that, the dentist will fill the root canal and make sure it's sealed completely. After that is done, a crown is placed on the tooth to protect it.
Anyone with a toothache can opt for oral drugs to get them treated, and the same holds true for fillings. As for a root canal, it is necessary if the soft tissues in the root canal of the patient become infected or inflamed.
Certain drugs used to treat dental pain can cause allergy in certain people and hence, painkillers are not recommended for them. When talking of root canal, patients who are suffering hypertension, are on prescription blood thinners, have diabetes, have fever or infections and either suffer from osteporosis or automimmune diseases.
The painkillers used to treat dental pain have side effects such as stomach ache, heartburn, stomach ulcers, dizziness, headaches, high blood pressure and more. Side effects of a filling include increased tooth sensitivity to cold, hot, sweet and sour foods. Tingling sensation, pain and numbness can also arise. A root canal carries more or less the same side effects as a filling along with inflammation and/or infection.
Those go through a course of painkillers should make it a point to follow a healthy diet in order to abate the side effects. The post-treatment guidelines for a dental filling include not drinking water or eating for at least a couple of hours after the procedure and avoiding foods and beverages that can cause sensitivity. As for root canal treatment, patients need to follow strict guidelines which include taking antibiotics prescribed, maintaining proper oral hygiene, not eating or drinking anything for a few hours after the procedure, and avoiding hard foods.
Painkillers will have an immediate affect and the dental pain a patient experiences will go down in an hour, which means recovery is speedy althoug one may have to continue having painkillers for 3 to 5 days minimum to get lasting relief. Fillings may need to be changed with time although the recovery is instant, and the same holds true for a root canal.
The cost of a root canal procedure ranges between Rs 3000 and Rs 4500. NSAIDs for dental pain are quite cheap and cost around Rs 9 to Rs 20. Dental filling costs Rs 500 to Rs 1500 per tooth.
Root canal is a permanent solution. Fillings may need to be changed from time to time in order to get relief and painkillers only help in providing symptom relief.
The best alternative to all the treatment methods mentioned is a tooth extraction. However, that's reserved for severe cases when the tooth is beyond repair with the help of fillings or root canal treatment.