A dental infection can be quite serious and should never be left untreated. As with any bacterial infection, it can spread to other areas of your mouth like the jaw bone. Or, depending on the location of the infection, it can cause throat swelling, sinus infection, or in rare cases, spread to the brain.
One of the most common infections we see is an abscessed tooth. An abscess is a bacterial infection which causes a pocket of pus to develop around the tooth.
What Causes Oral Infections?
Oral infections can result from periodontal disease, tooth decay, or a broken tooth. Poor oral hygiene is a major cause of tooth decay and infections. Other conditions may make you more susceptible to infection such as chemotherapy, immune disorders, medications, or diseases such as diabetes.
How is a Dental Infection Treated?
Sometimes, a root canal can restore an infected tooth but if it cannot be saved, the tooth must be extracted. After the tooth is removed, the area is cleaned to remove any traces of infection.
If the infection has spread to nearby teeth, jaw, or other areas of your mouth, Dr. Green will prescribe antibiotics to prevent further complications.
If the infection is severe, you may need additional treatment. Usually, this involves placing a drain near the abscess after the tooth has been removed so the pus can drain. The drain is left in place for 2-3 days or until no more pus is draining.
If you think you have an oral infection, please contact our office immediately for an examination.
Signs of Infection
Infections can occur in the mouth in teeth, gums, or other soft tissue. If you have any of the following symptoms, you may have a dental infection:
- Extreme or continuous pain around your teeth
- Swelling around your cheek, teeth, or gums
- Presence of pus
- A bad taste in the mouth
- Fever over 100.4
If you experience any of these warning signs, we encourage you to call us at (817) 237-7557 for an exam.
After Hours Emergencies: If you have an infection that needs emergency treatment, such as swelling of the neck or beneath the mandible, call our office and follow the recorded instructions. If you have difficulty breathing, call 911.