Why Is My 5 Year Old Saying His Tooth Hurts?

Why Does My 5-Year-Old Say Their Tooth Hurts?” When our little ones complain about tooth pain, we want to help them feel better fast. Around 520 million children suffer from cavities in their permanent teeth. While cavity is the common causes of tooth pain in children, it is not the only one. 

Let us find out the common causes of toothaches in kids and when to go to the dentist. In this blog, we’ll talk about why your child’s tooth might be hurting. From cavities to teething, we’ll explore the reasons behind their toothache. 

Causes of Tooth Pain in 5-year-old 

So, Why is my 5-year-old saying his tooth hurts? Let us find out.

Tooth Eruption 

One common cause of tooth pain in children is when a new tooth starts to come through the gum line. They may also feel more sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. Any discomfort should go away once the new tooth comes in fully.

Loose Teeth 

While loose baby teeth aren’t a usual cause of toothaches in children, they can still be painful. When a permanent tooth starts to come in, it may push against the gum and baby tooth, causing discomfort.

However, if a child experiences pain from a loose adult tooth could signal a more serious issue. It might mean the tooth was damaged, infected, or diseased.


What kids eat plays a big role in their dental health. Hard foods or those high in sugar or acid can cause tooth pain. This is especially true for children with sensitive teeth or underlying dental issues.

Encouraging a healthy diet and ensuring they get enough calcium daily can help prevent toothaches. If the pain persists or worsens, seeing a pediatric dentist is best.

Aggressive Brushing 

Believe it or not, brushing too hard or too often can lead to toothaches. Kids who brush their teeth aggressively may wear down the enamel covering their teeth or accidentally hurt their gums.

Tooth decay is another possible cause of toothaches in children, although it might not be obvious at first. In the early stages, kids usually don’t feel pain, but untreated cavities can lead to more discomfort over time.

Understanding Cavities 

When children don’t brush their teeth regularly, bacteria in their mouths feed on leftover sugars and release acid, which wears down enamel. This can lead to cavities and, eventually, toothaches.

Clenching or Grinding Teeth 

Some kids clench or grind their teeth, a condition called Bruxism. This can happen during the day or at night and may cause tooth or gum pain, as well as jaw aches.

Damaged Teeth 

Trauma from accidents or sports can cause tooth pain in children. Broken or chipped teeth, as well as gum injuries, may not be immediately visible without proper examination.

Gum Disease 

Regular teeth cleanings are essential for detecting early signs of gum disease. Swollen gums can lead to discomfort and weaken the bones supporting the teeth.

Tooth Abscess 

Untreated cavities and tooth decay can result in a tooth abscess, which can cause throbbing toothaches and needs prompt treatment to prevent further complications.

Remedies for Soothing Tooth Pain Why Is My 5 Year Old Saying His Tooth Hurts

When Your Child Says, “My Tooth Hurts, Mommy. Here are some things you can try to ease their pain until you can see the dentist.

Apply a Cold Compress 

Put a cold compress on the cheek to reduce swelling and numb the area, giving temporary relief from the pain. Be sure to wrap the compress in a cloth to protect your child’s skin.

Use Pain Relief Gel 

You can buy over-the-counter gels that are made just for kids with tooth pain. Apply them directly to the sore spot to numb it. Make sure to read the directions on the package or ask your child’s dentist for advice.

Offer Soft Foods 

Give your child soft foods to take some of the pressure off their sore teeth. Foods like yogurt, applesauce, and smoothies are easy on teeth and good for your child’s health.

Try Tooth Powders 

Sometimes, tooth powders made for kids can help ease discomfort and help teeth heal. These powders often contain natural ingredients that calm tooth pain and can be a gentle option to regular toothpaste, especially if your child has sensitive teeth.

Preventive Measures and Advice for Parents

Prevention is key to avoiding any problems associated with your child’s dental health. Here are some tips to help keep your child’s teeth healthy and prevent front teeth pain.

Establish Good Dental Habits Early 

Ask your child to brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush. Make brushing interesting by turning it into a game or brushing together to show them the right way.

Limit Sugary Snacks and Drinks 

Sugar can cause tooth decay, so limiting sugary treats and encouraging healthier snacks like fruits, vegetables, and cheese is important. Also, encourage your child to drink water or milk instead of sugary beverages, which helps maintain a balanced pH in their mouth and reduces the risk of tooth decay and sensitivity.

Use Protective Gear During Play 

If your child participates in sports or activities where dental injuries are possible, make sure they wear a mouthguard. This simple precaution can prevent a lot of pain and dental emergencies in the future. Additionally, helmets and face guards in certain sports offer extra protection for their upper teeth, reducing the risk of broken teeth or tooth loss.

When to Consult a Pediatric Dentist? 

It’s essential to recognize when home remedies fall short and professional care becomes necessary. Here are the situations in which you should reach out:

  • If your child’s pain persists for more than a day or two.
  • If you notice visible damage to their teeth.
  • If your child develops a fever, it could indicate an infection.

A timely, professional evaluation can prevent further complications and provide relief for your child. A pediatric dentist is trained to address the unique dental needs of young children with care and empathy.

They’ll not only offer immediate dental treatments but also provide long-term strategies to maintain your child’s oral health. Remember, when it comes to dental pain, a timely visit to the dentist can significantly improve your child’s comfort and well-being.


Wondering why your 5-year-old’s tooth hurts? Understanding why your 5-year-old says his tooth hurts is crucial for their dental health. From tooth eruption to cavities and other dental issues, various factors could be causing the discomfort. By recognizing the possible reasons behind the pain, you can take proactive steps to address it and ensure your child’s well-being.

Ready for a Happy, Healthy Smile? Visit Little Diamonds Pediatric Dentistry in Arlington, VA

Book an appointment with Little Diamonds Pediatric Dentistry, Arlington, VA. Our Pediatric Dentist, Dina Ghaly-Habib, understands the needs of children and is committed to providing compassionate and expert dental care tailored to their unique requirements. Book an appointment online or call us at (571) 281-8714.


Why is my child’s tooth hurting at 5 years old? 

Various factors, including tooth eruption, cavities, dental trauma, or gum disease, can cause toothaches in children.

How can I help my 5-year-old with tooth pain? 

Providing gentle dental care, such as brushing with fluoride toothpaste and visiting a pediatric dentist regularly, can help alleviate tooth pain in young children.

When should I seek professional help for my child’s toothache? 

If your child’s tooth pain persists for more than a day or two, if there’s visible damage to the teeth, or if your child develops a fever, it’s important to consult a pediatric dentist for professional evaluation and treatment.