That constant, unsettling pain in your mouth could be the result of a tooth abscess. A tooth abscess is no joke and should be looked at by a dentist as soon as possible. But how do you know if you have signs of tooth infection and what even is a tooth abscess in the first place? Below, you’ll find your go-to guide on everything you’ll need to know before considering a trip to the dentist.
What Is An Abscess?
A tooth abscess is a pus-filled bacterial infection. This infection falls below the umbrella term, dental abscess. There are two common types of dental abscesses. ‘
Firstly, there are periapical abscesses, otherwise known as tooth abscesses. In a tooth abscess the infection forms in what’s known as the pulp chamber before extending its way down in or around the root of the tooth. The pulp chamber is made up of delicate nerves and blood vessels. The infection can penetrate your jaw bone, leaving you in potentially bad shape, a point we’ll get into later.
Alternatively, a gum abscess, also known as a periodontal abscess occurs on the gum line instead of in the root of a tooth.
What Does An Abscess Tooth Look Like
The site where an abscess is collecting pus is referred to as the fistula. The fistula can resemble a pimple, because they are both raised from the surface of the skin, and are ball-like in shape. A fistula can range in size, just like a pimple. The area can also change in color, becoming a dark red as it reacts to the infection.
Warning Signs and Symptoms of Dental Abscess
If you experience one or more of the symptoms below, it may be wise to go get checked out by your dentist. Even early tooth infection symptoms can be an indicator of tooth abscess. A tooth abscess or gum abscess always needs treatment to properly heal.
If you have more serious signs of tooth infection you should either drive to your local ER or look up, for example, tooth abscess treatment in Los Angeles, to find a quick emergency appointment near you.
Early Tooth Abscess Symptoms
- Tooth Pain And Headache
One of the first signs of an abscess is severe tooth pain. Is there a sore spot in your mouth that aches whenever it is touched? Does it hurt to chew food or talk? Tooth nerve pain is a common telltale symptom of a tooth abscess. Tooth pain can end up radiating to your head, causing throbbing headaches.
- A Bad, Lingering Taste
A bad, lingering taste is a common side effect resulting from an abscess. The taste is the byproduct of pus leaking from the site of the infection. The taste is described as being anywhere from salty to metallic.
- Tooth Sensitivity
If your teeth are suddenly sensitive to the temperatures of foods or drinks, then it may be a sign of tooth nerve pain, indicating possible abscess.
- Ear and Jaw Aches
Our faces house a lot of different moving parts, which in turn, house multitudes of nerves. Due to the number of interconnected nerves and muscles, we can sometimes experience pain where it doesn’t originate. Even though ear or jaw aches are plaguing you, a tooth abscess may be the real culprit of your pain.
- Crown Pain
You may not think that you could get an abscess where you’ve had dental work done. However, as we’ll get into later, this is false. When tooth pain under crown comes and goes, it can be a sign of tooth abscess.
Late Tooth Abscess Symptoms (Serious)
If you fear you have a tooth abscess you should monitor your temperature. High temperatures are your body’s reaction to trying to fend off an infection. Temperatures can often go from 100.4 degrees or higher. A fever that rises to 103 degrees should always be swiftly accompanied by a trip to the ER.
- Swelling In The Mouth Or The Surrounding Area
Swelling is a common reaction to a dental abscess. Swelling can begin and end in the mouth, or it can also occur to the face, neck, and throat. Ballooning cheeks can be an uncomfortable symptom that should send you to the dentist right away!
- Your Teeth Feel Loose
A prolonged tooth abscess may have your teeth feeling loose. This i