What is a tooth abscess?

Man suffering from tooth ache in morning

You should always take good care of your teeth – not just so they look great, but also so that they can serve you well throughout your life. It is also important to take care of your teeth so that you can avoid serious problems, beyond just plaque. One such serious problem is a tooth abscess. Read on for more information about tooth abscesses and how you can avoid them!

What causes a tooth abscess?

A tooth abscess is an infected tooth. It can become infected when you have a chip, crack, or a cavity in the tooth that is left untreated. Bacteria gets into the tooth, and infection forms in between the root and the gums, or it may be located just at the root.

An abscess isn’t something you can treat at home. Pus and bacteria begin to collect, and it just gets worse. The infection can damage the teeth around it and eventually even the jaw bone. The infection can even spread to the rest of the body and cause very serious health issues.

Signs that you might have a tooth abscess include teeth that are sensitive to hot or cold, gums that are very tender, tooth pain, and a swollen area of the jaw. You may even have a fever and swollen neck glands because of the infection.

You should see your dentist right away if you have a damaged tooth, to prevent bacteria from collecting and causing an infection. If you do have an abscess, your dentist will try to save the tooth by draining the abscess and killing the bacteria. You may need to have a root canal so that the infected tissue can be removed from the tooth, and if the infection is very serious you might have to have the tooth removed.

It is important to take good care of your teeth, not just so you have a brilliant smile, but for your health as well. Brush at least twice a day, floss at least once a day, and see your dentist for cleanings twice a year. If you are having tooth pain, contact Avenue Dental in Ypsilanti, Michigan, for an appointment. Call (734) 484-4710 today!