An abscessed tooth is a painful infection at the tooth root or between the gum and a tooth. Abscesses are most often the result of severe tooth decay, but they can also be caused by a broken or chipped tooth or gum disease.
Anyone who thinks they have an abscess is advised to go the emergency dentist. In Buckinghamshire, dentists, including Garden View Dental Care, offer emergency appointments, and will do their best to fit patients in on the day they ring up.
The reason that going to an emergency dentist in Buckinghamshire is so important is not just the terrible pain that abscesses bring, but what can happen afterwards. Abscesses are often the result of openings in the tooth enamel. These allow bacteria to enter and infect the pulp in the centre of the tooth. From the pulp, the infection can spread down the root and into the jawbone supporting the tooth. This becomes much more serious again.
How to spot an abscess
Several symptoms indicate an abscessed tooth and require a visit to the emergency dentist in Buckinghamshire. These include:
- a severe, continuous toothache, resulting in gnawing or throbbing pain or sharp or shooting pain;
- pain when chewing;
- sensitivity of the teeth to hot or cold;
- a bitter taste in the mouth;
- foul smelling breath;
- swollen neck glands;
- general discomfort, uneasiness, or ill feeling;
- red and swollen gums;
- a swollen area on the upper or lower jaw;
- an open, draining sore on the side of the gum.
It is important to see the Buckinghamshire emergency dentist even if the tooth stops hurting. This may be because infection has killed the pulp in the tooth root. The infection will still be active and continue to spread and destroy tissue.
The treatment for abscesses
Most dentists will carry out root canal therapy, which involves draining the abscess through the tooth. They may also recommend root canal surgery to remove any diseased root tissue after the infection has subsided. Then, a crown may be placed over the tooth.
If the infection is really bad, the tooth may have to be removed so the infection can drain through the socket. Or the dentist may drain the abscess via an incision into the gum tissue.