Dental Abscess: A Royal Pain in the Mouth

What is a dental abscess?

Ugh!

If you’re experiencing pain in your mouth, there’s a very high likelihood you’ve got a dental abscess – a fancy term for a pocket of puss in your tooth or gums caused by a bacterial infection.

What are symptoms of a dental abscess?

Ouch!

The main symptom of a dental abscess is pain. It is very important that you call us right away to set up an evaluation if experiencing any of the following:

  • Severe, persistent, throbbing pain that can radiate to the jawbone, neck, or ear
  • Sensitivity when chewing or biting
  • Swelling in face or cheek
  • Difficulty swallowing or opening mouth
  • Nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, diarrhea (in extreme cases)
  • Foul smell or taste in your mouth
  • Sensitivity to touch
  • Sensitivity to hot and cold

What causes a dental abscess?

Eww!

A dental abscess is caused by a growth in bacteria from an existing cavity. When cavities are not taken care of properly, tooth decay spreads and wreaks havoc in neighboring teeth and gums. That’s why it’s extremely important to brush and floss regularly. When poor oral hygiene is the norm, bacteria spreads and pain results. Other factors that can lead to a dental abscess are gum disease, a cracked tooth, complications from dental surgery, and trauma.

What are the treatment options for a dental abscess?

Ah!

If you have dental abscess symptoms, call immediately, and we will try to set up an appointment for you the same day›! Once you arrive, we will make an evaluation and proceed accordingly. Treatment may involve an x-ray for a more accurate diagnosis, a small incision to drain the infected area, and antibiotics to aid in recovery. In severe cases, root canals and extractions may be required, but invasive treatments are rare and can be avoided if the abscess is treated immediately.

What can I do to manage the pain myself?

Phew!

If you can’t immediately come to our office for treatment, take these steps to minimize pain:

  • Avoid food and drink that exasperate the infected area.
  • Chew on the side of your mouth that is not impacted by the abscess.
  • Use a very soft toothbrush
  • Refrain from flossing.
  • Do make every effort to schedule an appointment with us as soon as possible so as to avoid any further complications.

How can I prevent getting a dental abscess?

Yay!

Good oral hygiene is the number one step to avoiding a dental abscess.

  • Regularly visit your dentist for oral exams and your dental hygienist for regular maintenance dental cleanings twice yearly.
  • Brush morning and evening.
  • Floss everyday.
  • Avoid surgary drinks and snacks.

There’s no doubt about it – a dental abscess is absolutely no fun. The good news is they can be easily avoided and carefully treated. Call us – your top dentist in NYC – today to set up a consultation if you think you may have a dental abscess. New York Office Phone Number 212-689-0024