What Is a Dental Abscess?

A dental abscess is a collection of pus that forms inside a tooth, in the surrounding gums or in the jaw bone that supports the teeth. Because an abscess is the result of an infection, it should be treated immediately to prevent the infection from spreading.

At Kool Smiles, our dental professionals can relieve your child’s pain and treat the cause of the infection quickly and affordably. Call us today to make an appointment.

Causes of a Dental Abscess

An abscess in the mouth usually starts as an infection in the tooth due to poor dental care, a cracked tooth, or a deep cavity. The infection can spread from the tooth to the gum, the cheek, under the tongue and into the jaw and facial bones.

Pus begins to collect to try to stop the infection from spreading to other parts of the body. This collection of pus causes pain and pressure.

If you think your child may have a dental abscess, ask them the following questions:

  • Do you have a throbbing pain in the tooth or gum that is getting worse over time?
  • Is the pain worse when you lie down?
  • Do you feel pain in or near your ear, jaw, or neck?
  • Does your tooth hurt when you eat or drink hot or cold food or drinks?
  • Is the tooth that hurts loose?

Symptoms of a Dental Abscess

If your child has a dental abscess, you may notice the following symptoms:

  • Bad breath
  • Gums that look swollen and red
  • A swollen face
  • A high temperature

If you notice any of these symptoms or your child answers “yes” to the questions above, your child may have a dental abscess that should be treated by a dentist immediately.

How to Temporarily Relieve Dental Abscess Symptoms

Although you can’t treat the cause of your child’s dental abscess at home, you can relieve the painful symptoms temporarily until you can see a dentist. 

  • Give your child over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • If the abscess breaks and releases pus, have your child rinse with warm water to cleanse the mouth and encourage more pus to drain.

Whether your child’s abscess is causing pain or not, he or she should see a dentist right away to treat the cause of the infection and stop it from spreading.

Dental Abscess Treatment at Kool Smiles

At Kool Smiles, we have the experience and skills to properly treat a wide range of dental problems, including abscesses. With over 120 locations nationwide, it’s simple to find a Kool Smiles near you. Call Kool Smiles today to make an appointment.

———-

Sources:

NHS: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Dental-abscess/Pages/Introduction.aspx

Emedicinehealth: http://www.emedicinehealth.com/dental_abscess/page3_em.htm