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Having a toothache is never fun, so what causes them? Can they lead to a more serious problem? Read our blog now to find out!


The main cause of toothache is tooth decay. Decay happens when the surface or enamel of your tooth has started to erode and cause a cavity. Fixing the decay can be done either with a filling; depending on the severity an extraction may be required.


Inflammation of surrounding tissues and nerves that put pressure on the tooth also leads to tooth pain. This needs to be treated otherwise the discomfort will continue and worsen.

Gum disease

Gum disease is an oral infection affecting your gums and teeth and will also give you pain. If left untreated the infection will cause gum recession and loss of bone. As the gums come away from your teeth, you will then become exposed to any bacteria, which will lead to plaque and will then decay your teeth.

Wisdom teeth

Wisdom teeth are impacted teeth as they take longer to come through, and not always straight away. They stay beneath your gums until your jawbone has room for them, leading to pressure on the jawbone each time they try to come through. As well as pain these teeth can give a feeling of pressure and soreness to the jaw.


Sometimes toothache is caused by something other than a dental issue. For example, when you’re congested or have sinus problems. The blockage of the tubes in your face and your sinus cavities can cause pressure to build around your face, causing pain such as earache and toothache. Usually, once the infection has gone you should start to feel relief, if not then using a decongestant.

What if I have toothache with braces?

Braces can cause pain during the first few days of wearing the appliance. However, if this continues then you should get checked out by your orthodontist. What if I develop a cavity while wearing braces? If this happens then your dentist will give you a filling, but if they're unable to reach the cavity then they may have to temporarily remove part of your appliance.

If you feel toothache for longer than a few weeks, then we recommend that you contact your dentist or orthodontist ASAP!