Abscessed Tooth: Causes, Treatments and Prevention


A variety of reasons leading to an abscessed tooth. One of the most common causes is since a decay becomes so large and deep that it reaches the pulp chamber. It will then lead to the invasion of bacteria to the dental pulp all the way down to the root. The bacterial infection can result in swelling and inflammation at the tip of the root.

tooth abscess

Some other causes could be:

– a blow to a tooth

– dental treatment including a crown or a filling that gets to close to the pulp chamber

– trauma to a tooth because it is broken or chipped

– gingivitis or gum disease

These problems cause the tooth enamel to open and allow bacteria to attack the center of the tooth.

Any tooth can be abscessed, but the wisdom teeth are especially easy to be infected because they are difficult to clean, which allows to develop decay.

These following factors can also become reasons to cause a tooth abscess:

– Poor dental sanitation: Paying less attention to take care of your teeth hand gums, for example not brushing your teeth twice a day, can increase your risk of tooth abscess in particular, and dental and mouth complications in general.

– Sugar: Regularly eating or drinking foods rich in sugar can lead to dental problems, as well.


Abscesses can be considered to be serious since it may lead the expasion of the infection to other parts of the body. If you think your tooth is abscessed, immediately call your dentist for an appointment.

If left unchecked and untreated, the infection may be more difficult to control and serious health complications could occur. There is the danger that the infection could rapidly spread to the bone of the jaw and other spaces of the head and neck.

To successfully treat the condition, the cause needs to be identified and eliminated as well as the treatment will depend on how much the infection has spread. If you have a weakened immune system, make sure your dentist know.

The treatment regularly includes oral antibiotics and draining the tooth plus surrounding areas of the infection. The dentist can apply a procedure called root canal therapy to achieve drainage. A root surgery could also be carried out to remove any diseased root tissue after the infection has subsided. The tooth may be extracted, as well, or the swollen gum tissue may be incised for the dentist to drain the abscess.

toothThe inflammation and pain of abscess may be relieved with a low-level laser, making the patient more comfortable to receive the injection in a more painless way.

If you have an abscess in your gums, you may be advised to rinse with warm salt water a few times per day for several days. The usual formal is mixing 1/8 of a teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of water. This may help draw the pus out and relieve pressure.

After around 6 months of the treatment, you may be asked for a dental X-rays to check whether healthy bone and tissue are filling the area of the abscess.

With children’s baby teeth, it is much harder to save an abscessed tooth. The most appropriate treatment could be removation of the infected tooth. It is important to completely remove all of the infection to avoid a persistent risk harming the adult tooth afterwards. Oral antibiotics may be considered depending on the spread of the infection.

If you are pregnant, any risk of infection can be more severe and become a risk for your unborn baby.


Keeping a habit of oral hygiene practices can help prevent developing a tooth abscess.

tooth (1)

– Keep your teeth and gums free of food

– Regularly do dental checkups

– Use flouridated drinking water

– Brush your teeth at leasts twice a day

– Use dental floss or an interdental cleaner to clean between your teeth daily

– Replace your toothbrush every three of four months, or whenever the bristles are frayed

– In case that you have a tooth problem including decay, fracture or sensitivity, meet the dentist to immediately treat it before bigger problems.

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