An abscessed tooth is a painful but common dental infection. If you are experiencing this affliction, you need to get it taken care of before the infection spreads through your body.
What Is An Abscessed Tooth?
An abscess is simply a pocket of pus. (Pus is a thick liquid created by an infection.) An abscess can show up in different areas of teeth and jaw tissue. There are three types of this dental ailment. A periapical abscess develops in the top of a tooth. A periodontal abscess grows in the gums. A less common type is pericoronitis, which is an infection in the gum flap over an emerging tooth.
Signs Of An Abscessed Tooth
Here are the signs and symptoms of tooth abscesses:
- Teeth sensitivity when you are chewing food
- Teeth sensitivity to cold or hot
- A pulsing toothache that may spread to your jaw or your ear
- Face or cheek swelling
- Bleeding gums
- A boil on your gums
- A loose tooth
- A tooth that is higher than the surrounding teeth
- Loss of appetite
What Puts Me At Risk Of Developing An Abscessed Tooth?
According to the ADA, “dental abscesses are the result of bacterial infection.” Several habits and conditions can increase your likelihood of developing this problem.
- Irregular brushing and flossing
- Eating a lot of sugary foods
- Dry mouth (often caused by medication)
- Skipping your dental cleaning appointments
- Gum disease
Abscessed Tooth Treatment
Although you may be able to soothe the pain at home with natural remedies (like clove oil), you won’t be able to get rid of the infection without a dentist’s help. Your dentist will examine your mouth and take x-rays to determine your treatment. This may include:
- Antibiotics to kill the infection
- Pain killers to manage the pain
- Draining the abscess (by making an incision in the gum or a tiny hole in the tooth)
- Deep cleaning the area around it (this may include a root canal)
- Removing the tooth if it is acutely decayed
Do I Need Emergency Care?
If your infection suddenly worsens, and your dentist is not available, you may need to head to the emergency room. Symptoms of this situation include fever (over 100.4), severe pain in your teeth and jaw, swollen lymph glands, lockjaw, and difficulty swallowing or breathing. If you have these symptoms, you should seek emergency care. (For more guidance, check out the ADA app.)
Although hospital emergency rooms rarely have a dentist on staff, the staff will be able to give you antibiotics and pain medications. With the infection halted and the pain managed, you will be able to deal with your condition until the first available dental appointment.
Make An Appointment Today
If you are suffering from a dental issue such as an abscessed tooth, call Pro Smile Dental Care in Danville, California. We are ready to help with all your dental needs.