An abscessed tooth is a dental emergency that requires immediate attention. An abscessed tooth is a painful infection that can develop in your tooth due to bacteria, food particles, or debris becoming trapped between your teeth and gum tissue. These small pockets can form in your gum line over time, leading to bacteria and plaque buildup in your mouth. Once it begins, this infection can quickly spread deep within your gums, causing pain and other unpleasant symptoms. The condition can reach your jawbone or even the bloodstream if left untreated. Visit Park Creek Dental Care for timely professional care that can prevent the infection from spreading to other teeth or surrounding tissues, reducing the risk of more severe health complications.
Symptoms of an Abscessed Tooth
Pain and swelling around the gum line can be a symptom of a tooth infection that has reached the tooth pulp.
The affected area, including the cheek, jaw, or neck, may become swollen and tender.
The tooth may be sensitive to hot or cold foods and beverages.
A foul taste or smell may be present due to the infection.
Steps to Manage the Dental Emergency
Contact a Dentist
Contacting a dentist immediately when dealing with an abscessed tooth is crucial. Explain your symptoms, including swelling, severe pain, or fever, and request an emergency appointment. Dentists are trained to handle dental emergencies and will provide appropriate treatment.
Rinse Your Mouth With Saltwater
Gently rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater can help alleviate some discomfort and reduce bacteria in the area. Do this several times a day as needed.
Apply a Cold Compress
If you notice swelling on your face or jaw due to the abscessed tooth, apply a cold compress or ice pack wrapped in a thin cloth to the affected area. This can help reduce swelling and provide temporary relief.
Avoid Applying Heat
While cold compresses can be helpful, avoid applying heat to the affected area, as it can worsen the swelling and pain.
The Treatments for an Abscessed Tooth
If your dentist determines that you have a tooth abscess, they may prescribe antibiotics to fight the infection first. They may also use a special rinse that contains chlorhexidine or chlorine dioxide to reduce inflammation around the tooth's roots. They’ll remove the diseased pulp and nerve tissue from the tooth, then apply an antibiotic dressing to the area while it heals. Finally, they’ll place a temporary filling to seal the opening in the tooth and protect the root from further bacteria buildup. If the tooth is too decayed to save, they will likely need to extract it to prevent further pain and inflammation. In these cases, they can also put a dental implant in the area so the patient won’t have to deal with a gap in their smile.
Dealing with an abscessed tooth is a dental emergency that demands immediate attention. For the best dental care, visit Park Creek Dental Care at 8080 Hickory Flat Hwy, Woodstock, GA 30188, or call (470) 601-7888.