Why Does My Toothache Feel Worse at Night?

Grand Rapids Dentists

Why Does My Toothache Feel Worse at Night?

700 400 Grand Rapids MI Dentist

Grand Rapids MI Toothache DentistIt’s hard to get a good night’s sleep when your tooth hurts. That’s why it’s important to schedule an appointment with our office at the first twinge of tooth pain. A toothache could indicate a number of problems, from cavities to bruxism. The best way to stop a toothache is to see one of our emergency dentists so they can treat the source of your pain.

Continue reading to learn why your toothache may seem worse at night.

Fewer Distractions from the Pain

There are fewer distractions at night to take your mind off the toothache. For this reason, some patients report feeling more intense tooth pain at night. The human brain is only able to focus on so many things at a time. When you’re trying to fall asleep, there’s less going on to distract you from your toothache.

Even if you have your appointment with our dentists the next day, it might be a good idea to take some over-the-counter medication, like ibuprofen, for the night just to allow for sleep.

Snacking Late at Night

Do you like sugary foods? So do the plaque on your teeth. Plaque is an invisible film of bacteria that lives on the surface of your teeth and gums. This bacteria weakens teeth by eating sugar and producing cavity-causing acid.

If you eat late-night snacks, it’s important you remember to brush your teeth afterwards. Otherwise, the sugar will sit on your teeth until morning. People who neglect oral hygiene are more likely to develop tooth decay and gum disease.

More Blood Circulation to Your Brain

When you lie down to sleep, more blood is able to rush to your brain. More blood circulation means experiencing more tooth pain than if you were standing. This is because the increased blood flow exerts pressure on the painful tooth.

Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

Do you often wake up with tooth or jaw pain? If so, you may be grinding your teeth at night. Most people who grind their teeth at night have no idea that they’re doing it. Instead, they wake up in the morning with dental pain.

Signs of teeth grinding include worn tooth enamel and waking up with tooth pain. Sometimes this pain radiates from your teeth into your jaw and even behind your forehead. It’s also not uncommon for people who grind teeth to feel sleepy during the day.

It’s important to know that pain experienced regularly in your jaw, jaw joints, ears, or face could mean that you have a TMJ disorder and treatment could help. The temporomandibular joints (TMJ) essentially connect your jawbone to your skull.

If you suspect teeth grinding is the cause of your toothache, call our office as soon as possible. Our dentists will be able to create a custom night guard. A night guard is a tray you wear over your teeth while you sleep. The protective material prevents you from grinding or clenching teeth while asleep.

Request an Appointment with GR Family Dental

If you haven’t already, it’s time to request an appointment with one of our emergency dentists. A toothache is your body’s way of letting you know something is wrong. The longer you ignore a toothache, the more serious the problem will become. For example, seeing us early can mean the difference between needing a small dental filling and a root canal.

Don’t put up with tooth pain! Our emergency dentists in Grand Rapids, MI are accepting new patients and will be more than happy to fit you into their schedule as soon as possible. To request an appointment, call GR Family Dental at (616) 455-3020.

This blog post has been updated.