While you often get general pain or discomfort when you have a problem with your teeth, this doesn't always happen immediately. Maybe a tooth is fine most of the time but gives you problems when you do something like take a drink of cold water. Oral reactions to cold liquids are actually useful. They can give you hints as to what kind of problem you might have. What can cold water tell you?
You Have Sensitivity Problems
Cold drinks can give you one of the first signs that your teeth have sensitivity issues. For example, if you take a drink of iced water and most or all of your teeth ache and hurt, then you have a problem. Teeth can become oversensitive for a range of reasons. This sometimes happens after you have your teeth whitened, for example. Enamel erosion and gum recession can also make teeth more sensitive to cold than they should be.
You Have a Damaged Tooth
Sometimes, a cold drink won't affect all your teeth at the same time. It may only affect one tooth, and this tooth may or may not hurt at other times. For example, perhaps you get a sharp pain when you drink that then slowly recedes. If this happens, the tooth probably has some damage to it. The tooth may have decay problems. This decay eats into the surface of the tooth, so when you drink cold water, the liquid can get inside and hit a nerve. You get a similar result if the tooth has a chip, has lost part of a filling or has developed a crack in it. Again, these breaches give the water a route inside under the protective enamel.
You Have an Abscess
In some cases, drinking something cold won't make a tooth or teeth hurt but will actually relieve pain. This usually happens if you have an infection like an abscess. Generally, your tooth will hurt at this stage, and it might hurt a lot. However, when you drink something cold and wash the liquid around the tooth, the pain subsides or disappears for a while. This is a major hint that you have an abscess. The water temporarily reduces inflammation, cools the infected area and numbs the tooth a little.
If you have any of these problems, arrange to see your dentist. It's better to have areas of sensitivity and pain checked out sooner rather than later. If you think you have an infection, then ask for an emergency appointment; abscesses need quick treatment to prevent them from getting worse. For more information, contact businesses like Morningside 621 Dental Surgery.