Dental problems can be tricky, and often when left untreated, they tend to snowball into bigger, more painful, and more expensive problems. A minor toothache if ignored, can go from minor to major before you know it, and can even result in an infected or abscess tooth. But how do you know if you have an abscess? There are signs of a tooth infection to look out for, and if you experience them, you’ll want to reach out to your Cleveland oral surgeon or dentist for treatment options.
Signs of a Tooth Infection
- Severe, persistent, and throbbing tooth pain that can even radiate to the jawbone, neck, or ear
- Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures in food and drink
- Sensitivity to the pressure associated with chewing or biting
- Swelling of the face or cheek
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
- Swollen, tender lymph nodes under the jaw or in the neck
- Sudden rush of salty, foul-tasting/smelling fluid in your mouth and pain relief if the abscess ruptures
Causes of an Abscess Tooth
A tooth abscess occurs when bacteria invades the dental pulp, or the innermost part of the tooth, which contains blood vessels, nerves, and other connective tissue. When that bacteria spreads and reaches the root of the tooth, it causes an infection, and generally brings with it the symptoms outlined above.
When to See the Dentist
If you are experiencing signs or symptoms of a tooth abscess, you’ll want to see your dentist immediately. If you have a high fever and/or swelling of the face, or trouble breathing or swallowing, you should go to the emergency room.
Avoiding Tooth Infections
As most issues with teeth, tooth infections or abscess teeth are generally caused by poor dental hygiene, overly sugary diet, or lack of proper dental care. You can avoid these symptoms of tooth infection by drinking water with fluoride, brushing and flossing your teeth regularly, eating a healthy, low-sugar diet, and visiting your Cleveland oral surgeon or dentist when necessary. It’s critical to stay on top of regular dental cleanings and exams so that small issues are detected and treated early before they evolve. Contact our team at Ocoee Oral Surgery with any need you may have. We’re always here to help.