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What can cause a toothache?

You can develop a toothache for many reasons, but the most common cause is tooth decay. When a tooth's structure breaks down, nerves may become exposed. If the nerves are irritated, your tooth will throb. Other causes of toothaches include:
  • infections
  • gum disease
  • trauma, such as a blow to the mouth
  • teeth grinding
Make an appointment to see your dentist right away if you develop a persistent toothache.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.