Why Do My Teeth Hurt When I Bite Down?

My tooth hurts when I bite down what do I do? The truth is, there are quite a few factors that could cause pain in your tooth when biting and chewing. And, oftentimes, you could find yourself needing emergency dental care.?

If you feel like you require emergency dental services, you can view this page. If you find yourself experiencing pain when biting down, it could be one of the following things. In which case, it definitely shouldn?t go ignored. 


A cavity can often be the culprit behind your toothache. Cavities can often lead to feelings of pain and discomfort while biting or chewing. They can also lead to pain that lingers after you consume certain foods. For example, sweet or sour foods can be particularly bothersome. 

Larger cavities pose an even bigger problem since food can oftentimes get stuck inside of them. This causes pressure, which leads to pain. When a cavity is advanced, decay is known to irritate the nerve inside your tooth, which can cause painful and uncomfortable flare-ups. 

However, it?s important to know that not all cavities are painful. Sometimes there will be an opening in your tooth, or you?ll feel a rough edge with your tongue. In any case, a cavity is definitely a tooth emergency, so make sure to visit your dentist. 

Cracked Tooth

A cracked tooth can be really tricky. Unlike cavities, which can be easy to notice, a cracked tooth can often be hard to diagnose. This is because the most obvious symptom of a cracked tooth is pain which does not appear as soon as there is any kind of fissure but a bit later. Regardless, pain is often a sign of a dental emergency, so scheduling a dentist appointment should be a priority.

Gum Disease

Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is often the cause of many oral health problems. There are quite a few different symptoms of periodontal disease. Such as bad breath, swelling and bleeding of the gums, loose and sensitive teeth, and, you?ve guessed it, painful chewing. 

If you?ve noticed some of these symptoms, it?s best to discuss them with a professional. Gum disease is a severe problem and should be dealt with as such.

Dental Abscess 

If you?re experiencing pain related to a specific tooth, it might be a dental abscess. The swelling inside the bone can put pressure on the tooth, which will cause pain when biting or chewing. A dental abscess requires dentist intervention since the only treatment method is performing a root canal. 


Occlusion basically means your tooth filling isn?t properly matched with your other teeth. If your tooth filling is too high compared to the others, it can cause issues when biting. The good thing is that you?ll probably notice this problem soon after the anesthesia wears off. 

Wisdom Teeth

Emerging wisdom teeth are another possible cause of your toothaches. Wisdom teeth are the final set of teeth to come out. So, they?re often not left with much space. This can cause a lot of pain, and many people opt to have their wisdom teeth removed. So, if you notice your wisdom teeth have started growing in, it?s best to consult your dentist on what to do.


Sometimes a toothache isn?t necessarily a dental problem. It can sometimes be attributed to sinus problems instead. This is because the roots of your teeth are near your sinuses. Therefore, sinus inflammation can sometimes cause pain while biting and chewing with your upper teeth. 

Pain in your back teeth can also often indicate sinus problems. Which usually calls for a dentist?s interference.

Gum Recession And Root Exposure

Gum recession is known to cause tooth sensitivity. Which on its own doesn?t necessarily cause pain. However, it will definitely hurt if you try to bite or chew. This is because bits of food can get stuck in the exposed root of your sensitive tooth. Gum recession can?t be fixed or reversed. However, it can be treated. It?s vital to seek out dental treatment if you?re suffering from gum recession. 

Bad Oral Habits

Oral habits, such as jaw clenching and teeth grinding, can sometimes cause toothaches. The pressure associated with these habits usually affects a larger part of your jaw. And, it?s usually concentrated on one side. Teeth grinding is usually done during sleep, while jaw clenching is a stress response. These habits can be held under control with stress reduction and relaxation exercises. But, you should still get a professional?s opinion.?

How to Deal With the Pain? 

Perhaps you?re certain that one of the causes above has something to do with your toothache. Or, you might be unsure. Regardless, here are some of the ways you do for temporary relief.

  • Rinsing with salt water – Rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater can get rid of some of the debris stuck between your teeth. Also, it can also reduce inflammation and disinfect your mouth. Stirring one-half of a teaspoon into a cup of warm water and rinsing your mouth with it will do the trick. 
  • Rinsing with hydrogen peroxide – Hydrogen peroxide is known to help with pain and inflammation. Make sure to use the 3% solution and dilute it with water. Make sure the mixture has equal parts of water and hydrogen. Then rinse without swallowing.
  • Pain medication – Pain medications can help with inflammation and, understandably, pain. Ibuprofen, aspirin, and similar meds can relieve toothache-related pain. If you?re under 16, you can use Tylenol instead. 
  • Cold compress – Holding a cold compress against the painful area for 15?20 minutes can help with pain relief. You can create a compress by wrapping a bag of ice in a towel or a cloth.
  • Peppermint tea – Peppermint is known for its soothing abilities. You can put a cooled bag of peppermint tea against the painful area. The bag shouldn?t be too warm or too cold, and you can put it directly against your teeth and gums. 

Garlic – Putting garlic in your mouth as a toothache remedy might sound silly. However, garlic is one of the best natural remedies, and it has powerful antibacterial properties. In order to make this remedy, you should crush a garlic clove and use it to create a paste. Then, you should apply the paste to the problematic area. You can also chew on a piece of garlic instead.