What is Dental Abscess?
A Dental abscess is the formation of pus inside the gum. It is an infection of the mouth, face, throat, or jaw that begins with tooth infection or cavity. Generally these infections are often caused by poor oral health and can be the result of lack or improper dental care, or caused by trauma such as tooth fracture. A Dental abscess may also occur in people with compromised immunity conditions such as autoimmune disorders (Sjögren’s syndrome and similar conditions) or conditions that weaken the immune system (diabetes, or following radiation or chemotherapy from cancer).
How Does it Happen?
Openings in the tooth enamel allow bacteria to infect the nerve of the tooth (the pulp) in the center of the tooth. Infection may spread out from the root of the tooth and out to the surrounding bones supporting the tooth.
White blood cells (the body’s defense mechanism against certain infections) travel through the walls of the blood vessels in the area of the infection and gathered within the damaged tissue. When this happen, pus forms (pus is yellowish-white fluid, formed in infected tissue, consisting of white blood cells, cellular debris, and necrotic tissue). This pus pocket is the dental abscess, which is represented by inflammation, redness, and pain
The pus can also form in the tooth itself. This condition is usually very painful and can lead to other dental issues, quick treatment is required. We will explain here, how you should know about an abscessed tooth or gum, symptoms, and treatment as well.
What are the Causes of the Abscess?
Bacteria is the main cause for an abscess. One of the ways that the bacteria collects and ultimately triggers the formation of pus is an untreated cavity. As the cavity deepens, more bacteria forms and collects. The abscess might also form as the result of an injury or due to a complication or poor treatment, from a previous dental procedure.
A dentist can determine by a thorough examination, if you have a drainable dental abscess. X-rays of the teeth are usually necessary to show smaller abscesses that may be at the deepest part of the tooth. The objective of any treatment is to remove the infection, save the tooth (if possible), and prevent further complications.
The abscess may form at the tip of the tooth root. This is known as a periapical abscess. A periodontal abscess refers to pus that develops in the gum tissue surrounding the tooth. If the abscess forms in the tooth proper, it’s usually referred to as a periapical tooth abscess. Dr.Miski will determine the type of abscess present and administer the suitable treatment.
Symptoms of Dental Abscess?
The most common symptom associated with any type of dental abscess is pain. You will notice a throbbing sensation that seems to emit from the tooth or the area just around it. Some people notice that the pain sometimes seems to emanate from the jawbone.
In some patients, a dental abscess may penetrate the bone and start draining into the surrounding tissues creating a localized facial swelling. it is also possible for the lymph glands in the neck will become swollen and tender in response to the infection. It may even feel like a headache as the pain can shift from the infected location. Generally, the pain does not travel across the face, only up or down as the nerves that serve each side of the face are separate.
You’ll also notice that consuming anything that’s hot or cold can trigger pain.Sometimes, it can be alleviated by applying an ice pack in the area. Teeth are sensitive when you bite or chew. It’s common to notice a slight elevated temperature and experience swelling on the cheek. If the pus leaks through the gum tissue, you’ll notice a sudden taste of something foul in the mouth, even while you breathe.
Do I have to Experience All Symptoms to Confirm that I Have Abscess?
You don’t have to experience all these symptoms in order for an abscess to be present. For example, you may not notice much pain, but there is some swelling in the gum tissue around the tooth. That area may be slightly tender but otherwise causes no discomfort. Even if you are not in a lot of pain, abscess needs to be treated as quick as possible.
Types of Dental Abscess
1) Periapical abscess. These are located at the apex of an infected tooth surrounding the roots. This type of dental abscess can occur on any tooth that has severe decay or is broken or chipped.
2) Periodontal abscess. These are located in the periodontal ligament (PDL) surrounding the tooth. This type of dental abscess will commonly involve the mandibular and maxillary first molars, maxillary incisors, and cuspids, followed by maxillary second molars.
Treatment of Dental Abscess ?
The first line of treatment is to drain the pus. Once it’s drained, the dental professional will be able to assess the amount of damage and determine what additional treatments are needed.
Sometimes, tooth could be saved, by having root canal treatment, and possibly a cap or crown to restore the tooth. If the damage is significant, the dentist may extract the tooth and recommend that you will have an implant or bridge.
An abscessed tooth is a painful event. Left untreated, infection can spread to other area in the mouth, and even to other parts of the body. If you suspect that an abscessed tooth is present, call us today and book your appointment with Dr.Miski.