What is tooth squeeze?
- Tooth squeeze occurs during a scuba diving ascent when air is trapped in a dental filling or cavity.
- As a diver goes deeper under water, air can enter a cavity or dental filling area.
- As the diver begins to surface that air (or gas) expands and is "trapped" resulting in pain to that area.
- Pain can occur on descent due to a "vacuum" effect however it is not common.
- Tooth squeeze is more likely to occur in divers with tooth decay, dental infections, or recent tooth extraction or fillings.
Tooth Squeeze Symptoms
Symptoms of tooth squeeze include:
Pain in the face and upper teeth is more commonly associated with sinus squeeze.
Tooth Squeeze Treatment
- If experiencing tooth squeeze, avoid diving until recovery is complete.
- Pain may be relieved with acetaminophen or ibuprofen taken according to the manufacturer's recommendation.
When to Seek Medical Care
- If experiencing tooth squeeze, have a dental evaluation and have any damage repaired.
Medically reviewed by Martin E. Zipser, MD; American Board of Surgery
REFERENCE: DAN.org. Dental Distress.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/4/2016
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