Sudden Tooth Pain? Here’s What Might Be Causing It

Experiencing sudden tooth pain can be both alarming and intensely uncomfortable. Whether it strikes sharp and fast or builds gradually into a throbbing agony, understanding what might be causing this unexpected discomfort is the first step towards finding relief. At Foutz Family Dentistry, we know how distressing sudden dental pain can be. That’s why we’re here to shed light on some of the common culprits behind this common dental issue. Recognizing the potential causes can not only help in alleviating your immediate pain but also in preventing further dental health complications. With the right knowledge and timely dental care, you can keep your smile healthy and pain-free.

Now, let’s dive into the common causes of sudden tooth pain, helping you understand why you might be experiencing this discomfort and how Foutz Family Dentistry can assist in treating it.

Common Causes of Sudden Tooth Pain

Tooth Decay

One of the most frequent causes of sudden tooth pain is tooth decay. Cavities, the result of decay, start small but can quickly penetrate deeper into the tooth, reaching the sensitive nerve fibers within the dentin and pulp. This penetration can lead to a sudden, sharp pain, especially when eating sweet, hot, or cold foods. Tooth decay is a progressive issue; without treatment, the pain can become more persistent and severe, signaling the need for immediate dental attention.

Gum Disease

Gum disease, or periodontitis, begins as inflammation of the gums caused by plaque buildup. In its early stages, known as gingivitis, you might notice some discomfort or bleeding during brushing. However, as the condition worsens, the gums can recede, and the roots of the teeth can become exposed, leading to sudden and severe pain. Gum disease can also cause pain due to the formation of abscesses in the spaces between the teeth and gums.

Cracked Tooth

A cracked tooth can be the result of many factors, including biting down on something hard, an injury, or even just the natural aging process. Sometimes, the crack might be too small to see, but it can expose the inner pulp of the tooth to bacteria, leading to inflammation and sudden pain. This type of pain is often felt when biting down or when the tooth is exposed to very hot or cold temperatures.

Abscessed Tooth

An abscessed tooth is a severe and potentially life-threatening condition where a pocket of pus caused by a bacterial infection forms in different parts of the tooth. This can lead to sharp, throbbing, or shooting pain that may spread to the jawbone, neck, or ear. Other symptoms might include fever, swelling, and a bad taste in the mouth. An abscess requires urgent dental care to prevent the spread of infection.

When to See a Dentist

If you’re experiencing sudden tooth pain, it’s crucial not to ignore it. Pain is your body’s way of signaling that something is wrong, and in the case of dental issues, what might start as a minor problem can quickly escalate into something more serious if left untreated. At Foutz Family Dentistry, we recommend scheduling an appointment as soon as you notice discomfort. Our team is equipped to diagnose and treat the root cause of your pain, providing relief and preventing further complications.

Preventive Measures

Preventing sudden tooth pain involves a few simple yet effective practices that can significantly impact your oral health. Here are some essential tips:

  • Maintain Good Oral Hygiene:

    • Brush your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
    • Floss daily to remove plaque and food particles between teeth.
  • Regular Dental Check-ups:

    • Visit Foutz Family Dentistry every six months for a routine examination and cleaning. These visits are crucial for catching potential issues early and keeping your teeth and gums healthy.
  • Protect Your Teeth:

    • Wear a mouthguard during sports or recreational activities to prevent injury.
    • Avoid chewing on hard objects, such as ice, popcorn kernels, and hard candy, which can crack or chip your teeth.
  • Healthy Diet:

    • Limit sugary and acidic foods and beverages that can erode tooth enamel and lead to decay.
    • Drink plenty of water and eat a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and dairy products to support dental health.

By following these tips, you can reduce your risk of experiencing sudden tooth pain and maintain a healthy, beautiful smile. Remember, preventive care is key to avoiding dental emergencies and ensuring long-term oral health.


While sudden tooth pain can be unsettling, understanding its potential causes is the first step toward finding relief. Remember, prompt treatment is key to preventing further dental health issues. If you’re experiencing sudden tooth pain, don’t hesitate to reach out to Foutz Family Dentistry. Our experienced team is ready to provide the care you need to smile comfortably once again.

For appointments or consultations, visit our website or contact us directly. We’re here to help you maintain a healthy, pain-free smile.


Solutions For A Severely Cracked Tooth

Teeth can crack for a number of reasons; perhaps you have fallen or gotten hit in the face, or maybe you simply chewed on something hard. A cracked tooth is unfortunate, but you do not have to worry because there are several effective solutions for a cracked tooth.

At Foutz Family Dentistry, we have seen countless patients with cracked, chipped or broken teeth and offer a number of procedures to repair your damaged teeth. The right solution will be dependent on how severe the damage to the tooth, but with over 30 years of experience Dr. Foutz has the knowledge and experience needed to deliver the finest dental care.

Reasons For A Cracked Tooth

Teeth can crack for many reasons including:

  • A bad fall
  • Blow to the face
  • Biting something hard
  • Tooth decay
  • Cavities

Procedures To Repair A Cracked Tooth

1) Porcelain Crown

A porcelain crown is placed over a tooth, surrounding the enamel. In essence, a crown functions as a cap on the tooth, protecting it from continued damage, easing pain while chewing, and improving its appearance. Crowns are made in tooth-colored porcelain that look natural but are strong and durable. Crowns are made individually for each person ensuring that you receive a crown made specifically for your teeth that will be comfortable and permanent.

2) Fixed Bridge

A fixed bridge consists of one or more artificial teeth that are attached to crowns on adjacent teeth. A bridge may be a good option if you have more than one cracked tooth as it can help if you have more than one cracked tooth. A bridge is also a good option if your tooth is so severely cracked that it must be removed; it helps to complete empty spaces giving a natural complete looking smile.

3) Dental Implants

A dental implant is one of the most sought after solutions for replacing missing teeth or improving the appearance of severely cracked or damaged teeth. Dental implants can replace a single tooth in between two health teeth, allowing you to only address the tooth in question. With a dental implant, the severely cracked tooth would first be removed. After the gum has healed, a porous metal anchor is first placed into the jawbone and given time for osseointegration. Afterwards a mounting post and a specially designed crown are attached to the post and positioned at the gum line. Dental implants function like natural teeth and can be used as anchors for crowns, bridges or to secure loose dentures.

4) Cosmetic Bonding

Cosmetic bonding is more commonly used for minor cracks or chips in teeth. Using a tooth-colored composite resin, a cracked tooth is filled or repaired helping to improve its aesthetic appearance. Bonding can provide long-lasting results but is better used for smaller corrections.

5) Veneers

Porcelain veneers are custom-made shells that are made to look like a natural tooth. A veneer is created to match both the color and shape of your teeth, but is bonded to the tooth in order to correct minor flaws. With a veneer, you can retain your tooth and its natural strength while improving the appearance of a cracked tooth.

To learn more about effective solutions for severely cracked teeth in Henderson, Nevada, call Foutz Family Dentistry today at (702) 792-5929.

Dr. Barton H. Foutz, DDS
2510 Wigwam Parkway Suite 100 Henderson, NV 89074
(702) 792-5929

Ezbond A. Foutz, D.D.S.
4 Generations of Dentists Spanning 3 Centuries
1st Generation:

Great Grandfather

Dr. Ezbond A. Foutz
Harold B. Foutz, D.D.S.
4 Generations of Dentists Spanning 3 Centuries
2nd Generation:


Dr. Harold B. Foutz
Lawrence C. Foutz, D.D.S.
4 Generations of Dentists Spanning 3 Centuries
3rd Generation:


Dr. Lawrence C. Foutz
Barton H. Foutz, D.D.S.
4 Generations of Dentists Spanning 3 Centuries
4th Generation:

Family and Cosmetic Dentist

Dr. Barton H. Foutz