If you’ve ever had a tooth infection, you know how painful they can be and that they can put your tooth at risk. However, if an infection is left untreated long enough, it can become very dangerous for your health and may even be life-threatening.
A tooth infection, sometimes called a tooth abscess, is a pocket of infection and pus that occurs because of a bacterial infection in the mouth. Infections can occur anywhere on the teeth and will never go away on their own. They must be treated by a dental professional. Tooth infections usually occur because of untreated dental cavities or any type of traumatic dental injury. It’s vital that your tooth infection is caught as quickly as possible; otherwise, the damage will continue to spread.
An infection is treated by draining the pus and infection from the site, thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting the site, and then sealing the wound to prevent any further infection. If the infection is severe enough, it may require a root canal or the complete removal of the tooth.
Tooth Infection Symptoms
Common symptoms of a tooth infection can include:
- Facial swelling
- Tooth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
- Pain when pressure is applied to the affected tooth
- Swollen lymph nodes in the jaw or neck
HEALTH PROBLEMS CAUSED BY TOOTH INFECTIONS
If a tooth infection goes untreated, it may spread to the jaw, neck, or even brain. This would cause the infection to become life-threatening. More rare complications include sepsis, septicemia, meningitis, brain abscess, or Ludwig’s angina. Many of these can serious health risks and may cause death.
The best way to catch an infection early is to know and recognize the symptoms. If you’re suffering from any of the symptoms of a tooth infection, it’s important to get immediate dental care.