How do you fix an exposed tooth nerve?
The dentist may apply a fluoride gel or desensitizing agents to the area, treat gum disease or recommend a gum graft to cover exposed tooth roots. Other treatments include dental fillings, bonding, dentin fillers or inlays.
Symptoms and treatment of an exposed tooth root
When a tooth root is no longer concealed by the gums, this can trigger sensitivity and pain. Without treatment, it may lead to infection and other complications.
This article describes the causes and symptoms of an exposed tooth root, as well as various treatments and signs that a trip to a dentist is necessary.
What is an exposed tooth root?
Only about half of a tooth is visible in the mouth. The rest sits below the gumline and anchors the tooth in the jawbone. This concealed part of the tooth is called the “root.”
All teeth have at least one root, but some have two or three. Each root resembles a prong. Like the rest of the tooth, the root contains nerves and sensitive tissue. When the root is exposed to the air, it can become damaged and cause intense pain.
Many dental issues can cause tooth pain and sensitivity. If the teeth look thinner near the gums, or if one or more prong-like projections are visible, the issue may be an exposed tooth root.
An exposed root may not be visible, however, depending on the location of the affected tooth.
In a tooth located in the front of the mouth, a person may be able to see some or all of an exposed root if:
- Damage to the gums exposes the deeper structures of the tooth.
- The top of the tooth has broken off, leaving the root visible.
- The tooth is beginning to rotate, loosen, or fall out.
A person with an exposed root may also experience:
- pain when brushing the teeth
- bleeding gums
- changes to the shape of the gums or teeth