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What Causes Back Tooth Pain

by Williams, Daily & Frazier on Mar 17, 2022 11:01:00 AM

Molar pain can make life hard. When you're in pain, it's hard to think about anything else. Molar pain makes eating difficult, and can intrude on your thoughts when you're trying to concentrate on something else. No one should have to live with this problem.

There are many reasons that people experience molar pain. If this is a problem you're experiencing, it's important to know why. The more you know about molar pain, including its causes and how it can be avoided, the easier it will be to take care of yourself.

Cold or Heat Sensitivity

Some molar pain is the result of heat and cold sensitivity in that part of the mouth. Typically, sensitivity is caused by enamel that has worn away, exposing the nerves underneath.

If worn enamel is the cause of your tooth sensitivity, there's no way to restore the old enamel. However, there are some things you can do to reduce your sensitivity. Some toothpastes are created to control that sensitivity.

Ask your dentist which toothpastes recommended for you. Consider switching toothbrushes, you're using a brush with medium or firm bristles. Use soft-bristle brushes to avoid wearing down the enamel further.


An abscess is a pocket of pus that develops because of an untreated infection that has eroded the gum line to the very limit. Abscesses also may form as a result of dental work that has damaged the tooth. To treat an abscess, you may need a root canal and a crown put in place.

Abscesses can cause tremendous pain. Don't ignore it! Alert your dentist to your problem, so they can decide what needs to be done to treat your problem.


A cavity is a bacterial infection that decays the tooth, roots and nerves underneath. A cavity may not be very painful at first, but once it reaches the roots and nerves, you'll feel it.

If you have a cavity, you may notice discoloration in the tooth and pain in the molar. You may even be able to see the hole in your tooth! Seek dental help if you think you have a cavity.


Periodontitis is a long-term infection that has completely killed off the nerves underneath the tooth, rotting the actual tooth to the point of no return. Periodontitis can also damage the bone that supports the tooth.

Left untreated, periodontitis can lead to tooth loss. It can also impact your overall health. Infections from the mouth can spread to other parts of the body. If your tooth is black or brown in color, get help as soon as possible.

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the third molars in the back of the mouth. Generally wisdom teeth grow in during teenage years, protruding the gums and colliding with your back molars. Wisdom teeth don't always grow in, and when they do, they don't always impact the other molars.

Often, wisdom teeth should be removed to prevent pain and potential abscesses. However, if you're not feeling any pain, then you may not need wisdom teeth removal. Signs your wisdom teeth are creating a problem include:

  • Swelling in the back of the mouth
  • Difficulty opening your mouth
  • Jaw pain
  • Tender, bleeding gums

Cracked teeth

It's not that hard to crack a tooth. It can happen when you bite into a piece of hard candy, chew something sticky like a caramel, or when you experience a blow to the head. A crack in your tooth may not sound like a big problem, but if you have a crack on one or more of your teeth, this can expose the roots and nerves, causing severe pain that should be attended to immediately.

It can be hard to tell when you have a crack in your tooth, but if you do, your dentist will find it quickly. That's why it's important to see your dentist on a regular basis, and it's especially important to see the dentist when you're experiencing tooth discomfort.

Experiencing Molar Pain? Call Today

Are you having a problem with molar pain? To make an appointment, or to find out more about what you can do to control your molar pain, contact Williams, Daily & Frazier Dental.

Williams, Daily & Frazier Dental is a family and cosmetic dentist in Raleigh, NC with a dedicated team of dentists, assistants, hygienists and administrators who are enthusiastic in their commitment to their patients. We offer dental implants, Invisalign teeth straightening, in-office and home teeth whitening options, and Oral-B electric toothbrushes.
Contact Williams, Daily & Frazier at (919) 846-9070 for more information and to schedule an appointment today.