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Dental Abscess: Symptoms, Treatment and Healing

Dental-Abscess What is an Abscessed Tooth? Tooth Abscess Symptoms Dental Abscess Dangers Tooth Abscess Treatments Healing After Abscess Procedure

What is an Abscessed Tooth?

A dental abscess is a serious infection in the tooth’s pulp—the bundle of nerves and blood vessels in the center of each tooth. A dental abscess should be treated as soon as possible, because the infection from an untreated dental abscess could spread to other parts of your body.

 

Tooth Abscess Symptoms

If you have any of these symptoms, you might have a dental abscess, and you should see a dental professional as soon as possible: 

Gum Symptoms:

  • Redness
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Open sores on the gums 
  • Presence of a small bump (gumboil) near the infected tooth on either the inside or outside of the gums

Tooth Symptoms:

  • Pain while chewing
  • Pus around the edge of the infected tooth
  • Persistent tooth sensitivity to hot and cold foods

Other Symptoms:

  • Swelling elsewhere on the face such as the jaw or in the glands of the neck
  • A bitter taste in the mouth
  • Extremely foul breath

Dental Abscess Dangers

If you experience any dental abscess symptoms, here are some things not to do:

  • Don’t delay: See a dental professional as soon as possible. If treated promptly you may be able to avoid having the infected tooth removed.
  • Don’t stop your oral hygiene routine: Continue to brush and floss.
  • Don’t be fooled if your dental abscess stops hurting: Pain associated with a dental abscess may go away if the tooth root has died. But a dead tooth root doesn’t mean the infection is gone. In fact, the infection from a dental abscess can still spread.

Tooth Abscess Treatments

Proper treatment of a tooth abscess will cure the infection as well as your severe toothache. Your dentist may treat the abscess in any of several ways, including a root canal or incision into the gums to allow the infection to drain. In extreme cases, the tooth may need to be removed and replaced. Three common methods for treating a dental abscess are:

  • Root Canal: If the abscess is not severe, the infected material can be scraped out, and the tooth can be repaired with a crown.
  • Extraction: If the abscess is more severe, the infected tooth will be removed and replaced.
  • Gum Incision: In some cases, an incision is made in the gum to allow the infected tissue to drain out.

Healing After Abscess Procedure

No matter how your dental abscess is treated, you can protect your mouth as it heals, and help prevent future tooth decay by following a regular oral hygiene routine that includes twice-daily tooth brushing and daily flossing. The Crest Pro-Health Sensitive + Enamel Shield Bundle includes products that are appropriate to help keep your mouth healthy. The product line includes:

Sources:

  1. http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/toothaches
  2. http://www.webmd.com/oral-health/guide/abscessed-tooth
  3. http://www.medicinenet.com/abscessed_tooth_guide/article.htm

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