Tend to that toothache.

added on: June 13, 2017

Abscessed teeth can affect your overall health when left untreated. Abscesses are an oral infection at the root of the tooth.  It can be caused by severe tooth decay, deep filling work, medical conditions that weaken the immune system, trauma, or fractures and breaks that may allow bacteria to travel to the pulp.  Symptoms can include fever, pain when chewing, foul odor, bad taste, swollen glands, inflamed gum tissue, opening that drains pus and a swollen jaw.  Some people do not experience any symptoms and their abscess may be found on a radiograph.

Infection can spread to other area of the body. It can lead to tooth loss, spread to the brain, cause a sinus infection, cause bacterial endocarditis (infection in the heart) and increase risk of Ludwig’s angina which can severely restrict the airways.

Preventing an abscess includes good homecare and visiting a dentist regularly to help prevent tooth decay or treat smaller areas of decay. Note that any past trauma, even as far back as childhood, can develop an abscess as an adult even with the best of homecare routines.

Treatment of an abscess is limited to a root canal or extraction of the tooth affected. And in cases where swelling occurs, an antibiotic may be used as a temporary aide to address the swelling in the surrounding tissues.  The antibiotic, however, will not treat the infection.

Making oral health a priority is crucial to your overall health. Brushing, flossing, rinsing and regular check-ups are about more than just a great smile.  Taking care of your teeth will help keep you healthy and maintain current oral gum tissue conditions.

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