It may seem strange, but it’s entirely possible for you to get a toothache on an airplane, even if your tooth feels completely normal on the ground! Why does this happen, and what does it mean? Find out from the office of James A. Burden, DDS and Associates below, and get the help you need to make sure you never get a toothache on an airplane again.
Airplanes fly at heights of nearly 30,000 feet, where the air is too thin for us to breathe properly. So the cabin is pressurized, but only to a height of about 6,000-8,000 feet above sea level.
This means that the air expands as the air pressure in the cabin increases and decreases. This is why your ears “pop” during flight. The air inside your ear is equalizing with the air in the plane cabin.
This can also happen to your teeth!
If you have a cavity in your tooth or you have an older filling that does not fit perfectly in your tooth, pockets of air may form. They will try to expand as the air pressure becomes lower, and if these pockets cannot escape, they can put pressure on the nerves below your tooth, causing a toothache.
If your teeth are healthy and free of cavities or air pockets caused by worn-out dental work, you won’t have to worry about getting a toothache on an airplane. Your teeth will not have any air trapped inside them, so they won’t hurt as you ascend or descend.
If you do notice a toothache while flying, this actually means you should see a dentist as soon as possible. You may have a cavity or failing piece of dental work. If you don’t get treatment right away, your tooth could continue to deteriorate, causing further complications.
By filling your tooth properly or replacing worn out dental work, Dr. James Burden can provide the level of quality that prevents toothaches on an airplanes from occurring.
If you’re catching a flight in the next day or two and don’t have time to visit the office of James A. Burden, DDS and Associates, there are a few things you can do to help with the pain of a toothache on an airplane.
We recommend taking an over-the-counter pain medicine like ibuprofen or naproxen, or using a topical numbing agent like Orajel to help with your toothache on your flight. But remember, these are only temporary solutions.
You should see a dentist as soon as you can after your trip and get the treatment you need to fly with confidence.
If you get toothaches on airplanes, this is a sign that something is wrong with your tooth. Don’t delay. Contact the office of James A. Burden, DDS and Associates now to schedule your consultation, and get the restorative care you need to feel comfortable on your travels and protect your smile. Get in touch by phone at (757) 229-1224, or stop by our office in Williamsburg at 277 McLaws Circle, Williamsburg, VA 23185.