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Tooth Abscess

A tooth abscess can be what is causing your toothache and if left untreated, it can lead to more serious problems.

A tooth abscess is a pocket of pus that’s caused by a bacterial infection, around a tooth. They can cause a lot of discomfort and lead to further complications in your mouth. You will often experience severe toothache with an abscess which can also refer pain in your jaw, neck or ear. Many people also experience swelling and sensitivity around their teeth and gums. The most important thing to do if you think you may have a tooth abscess is to make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.

Symptoms

  • Severe, uncomfortable toothache
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Sensitivity or pressure when chewing
  • Fever
  • Swelling
  • Foul taste fluid in your mouth
  • You might even have difficulty breathing or swallowing.

See your dentist as soon as possible if you have any signs of a tooth abscess. 

Causes

Anyone that has ever had a tooth abscess will know how painful and uncomfortable they can be. And they definitely won’t go away without treatment. That’s why it’s so important to see your dentist as soon as you can. 

A tooth abscess is caused by an infection around the root of a tooth, when bacteria attack the dental pulp. They are usually the result of an untreated cavity, a dental injury or from prior dental work.

There are a number of factors that can increase the risk of a tooth abscess, these include:

  • Dental decay
  • Periodontal (gum) disease
  • Impacted wisdom teeth

Risk factors that may lead to or exacerbate dental diseases that causes abscesses include:

  • Poor dental hygiene
  • A high sugar diet
  • Smoking
  • Dry mouth
  • Diabetes and some other systemic diseases

When to see a dentist

Book an appointment to see a dentist as soon as possible if:

  • You are in pain
  • Pain lasts longer than a day or two
  • The pain is persistent, severe or unbearable
  • You have a fever, earache, jaw ache or pain when you open your mouth wide
  • If you have difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • Swelling in your face or check or tender swollen lymph modes
  • If you’ve had an infection in your tooth previously
  • If you’re experiencing stress, or run down

FAQ

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What is the treatment for a tooth abscess?

If you think you might have a tooth abscess you should visit your dentist as soon as possible. A tooth abscess requires professional treatment and it won’t go away on its own. Treatment of a tooth abscess may involve draining the abscess to remove the infection. In many cases dentists can treat your tooth by performing a root canal. However, in more advanced cases the tooth may need to be extracted. You should never leave a tooth abscess untreated as it can lead to serious and sometimes life-threatening problems.

Can you treat a tooth abscess at home?

A tooth abscess will not go away on its own. They require specialised treatment by a dentist or specialist. If left untreated a tooth abscess can cause serious issues. We recommend booking an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. If you’re experiencing unbearable pain make sure you choose an emergency appointment when you book online.

Can a tooth abscess be prevented?

In many cases a tooth abscess can be prevented. It’s important to maintain a nutritious, balanced diet and take good care of your oral health. That means a combination of at-home dental care and building a great relationship with your dentist.

We recommend a healthy lifestyle, regular self-care and regular visits to the dentist. For optimum oral health:

  • Practice good oral hygiene habits at home including brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing once a day
  • Book hygiene visits with a dental hygienist or oral health therapist twice each year
  • Book routine exam and x-rays visits with your dentist at least once each year

Book your appointment today!

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