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Northview Family Dental

Why Does Air Travel Cause My Tooth To Hurt?

Posted on 7/18/2022 by Robert Leale
Why Does Air Travel Cause My Tooth To Hurt?Your body's air is attempting to acclimate to the air pressure shift brought on by your flight's ascent and descent. Toothaches will not harm teeth that are in good health. However, you can have tiny air pockets in your teeth if you have cavities or have had previous dental work, like fillings. These pockets will attempt to enlarge when the cabin's pressure shifts. This may then result in discomfort and pain. Even if your teeth feel good on the ground, you can have a toothache in the air.

Nearly 40,000 feet is the average altitude of an aircraft. Because the air is too thin at this altitude for us to breathe comfortably, airplanes are pressurized. However, the air pressure in airplanes is not the same as what is typical at above sea level. The cabin is pressurized to a range of 6,000 to 8,000 feet. Air slightly expands as we ascend from sea level, and the cabin pressure changes. This is also the reason why a toothache on a plane is possible.

If air is trapped in a cavity-caused hole in your tooth, it will attempt to expand when the plane hit high. The same thing may occur if you have a filling or crown with a gap where air can get trapped. This pressure will increase as the plane ascends and could exert pressure on the nerves in your tooth's root. This ultimately results in a toothache.

Preventing toothache in airplane

You can avoid toothaches when flying by removing air spaces from your teeth. You should get a filling or a crown straight soon if you have a cavity big enough to hurt while flying. Air will not be able to enter your tooth once it has received the proper care. Dental work follows the same rules. It is a symptom that the filling is loose and may soon fail if you have pain in a tooth that has received a filling. A filled tooth won't allow air in. Contact us today to have a proper medical check before traveling.

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Spokane, WA 99218-1319


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Robert Leale DDS, 1121 E. Westview Ct. Spokane, WA 99218 + (509) 590-1763 + + 4/18/2024 + Associated Words: dentist Spokane WA +