FAQs About Tooth Abscess

A dental abscess is a collection of pus that can develop inside the teeth, in the gums (gum abscess), or in the bone that supports the teeth. A bacterial infection is to blame for this dental problem. A periapical abscess is an abscess that develops at the root of a tooth. A periodontal abscess is an abscess in the gums.

Dental abscesses are generally, but not always, painful. They should be examined by a dentist in either situation. Abscesses do not go away on their own, so it is critical to seek care as soon as possible. They have the potential to spread to other parts of the body, making you sick.

What causes an abscessed tooth?

A tooth abscess can result from a crack or other damage to tooth decay. It may also be a result of an infection in the sinus, mouth, or teeth. A sinus infection may spread to a tooth, as the bacteria can enter the bloodstream and reach the tooth. At times, a dental abscess can also result from a foreign object becoming embedded in the tooth, such as a toothpick or piece of food.

What are the signs of an abscessed tooth?

When you have an infected tooth, your gums will become red, swollen, and painful. The infection is caused by bacteria that enter the tooth through cracks or between the tooth and the gum. The swelling and pain may be caused by pus that builds up in the roots of the tooth. The bacteria can also spread across the jawbone to your ear, causing a facial infection. You may experience

  • Severe and persistent toothache, which may radiate to the neck, ear, and jawbone
  • Temperature-related teeth sensitivity
  • Sensitivity to pressure while biting and chewing
  • Face or cheek swelling
  • Tender, swollen lymph nodes in the neck or under the jaw
  • Fever
  • Difficulty in swallowing and breathing
  • A sudden rush of foul-tasting and foul-smelling, salty fluid in the mouth, along with pain relief. This happens when the dental abscess ruptures

How serious is a dental abscess?

This is an infection and a serious condition that requires prompt medical treatment to avoid complications and worsening of health conditions. It is considered a dental emergency and the patient should seek a dentist immediately. If the infection remains untreated, the consequences can be life-threatening as it spreads to other regions of the body.

How long can one go without treating an abscessed tooth?

A dental abscess will never go away on its own and requires intervention from a dentist. If the infection is not treated during its initial stage, it can last from 5 to 12 months, but this means you will have a risk of developing serious medical problems as it will spread. If no treatment is received, the dental pulp will eventually die and develop another abscess. The infection will travel through the bone and appear in several other spots. The conclusion is that an untreated dental abscess can sustain for 12 months and more, but going this long without treatment means dangerous consequences such as sepsis and even death.

What is the abscess treatment?

The dentist will treat the abscess by eliminating the source of the infection and draining the pus. Treatments can also include root canal procedures and tooth extractions depending on the severity and location of the infection.

If you are worried that you have a dental abscess, book your appointment with one of the dentists at Randall Dentistry today.

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