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Is your child complaining about a toothache? Tooth pain and discomfort are very difficult to deal with, especially for kids. There are several factors that could cause your child to experience tooth pain or tooth sensitivity to cold or hot food. If these symptoms persist, we recommend that you make an appointment with their pediatric dentist as soon as possible. The pediatric dentist will be able to assess your child’s individual situation, and make suggestions or, if necessary, create a treatment plan to work on alleviating their pain. While individual cases vary, there are a handful of common causes of tooth sensitivity that parents should be aware of.

Teething

Of course, when your child is very young and their primary (baby) teeth are still coming in, they will experience the pain and discomfort of teething. This is very normal and typically does not indicate a need for medical intervention. To help alleviate your child’s pain, we recommend tools like teething rings. Teething rings and other similar products can be kept in the freezer or fridge so that when your child chews on them, their cold temperature will help numb their gums and reduce inflammation.

If your child is older and beginning to lose their primary teeth, their permanent teeth may also cause discomfort as they come in. If the eruption is causing your child pain, we recommend soft foods, and ice to help numb their gums if necessary. If the teeth around the exposed gums are sensitive, ice may not be a great option. If symptoms persist, your pediatric dentist may recommend a low dose of children’s pain relieving medication.

Poor Brushing Habits

If your child is not properly brushing and flossing their teeth, they may experience tooth sensitivity. This may be the result of brushing too abrasively, which can wear down the protective layer of enamel on their teeth, or from not brushing enough, which can allow sugars and other food particles left behind to eat away at their teeth. Enamel damage leaves the tooth’s dentin exposed and unprotected, which can cause pain. If your child is experiencing chronic tooth sensitivity, check up on their oral hygiene routine to see if there is any room for improvement!

Tooth Damage

If your child’s tooth is cracked or otherwise damaged, it can become filled with bacteria. This can often cause inflammation in the pulp of the tooth. The pulp is directly connected to nerves, and exposure of the dentin or tooth pulp to the elements causes sensitivity and pain. In more severe cases, tooth damage may lead to infection or other serious issues. If your child suffers from tooth damage in an accident, you should see your dentist right away.

Smiling should be painless! As a pediatric dental practice, we are here to help your child achieve their happiest, healthiest smile. If your child is experiencing tooth pain or sensitivity, schedule an appointment with us today!