Learn the facts of Dental Abscess.
What is a Dental Abscess?
“A dental abscess (also termed a dentoalveolar abscess, tooth abscess or root abscess), is a localized collection of pus associated with a tooth. The most common type of dental abscess is a periapical abscess, and the second most common is a periodontal abscess. In a periapical abscess, usually the origin is a bacterial infection that has accumulated in the soft, often dead, pulp of the tooth. This can be caused by tooth decay,broken teeth or extensive periodontal disease (or combinations of these factors). A failed root canal treatment may also create a similar abscess.” (Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia).
What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Dental Abscess?
“Symptoms from a dental abscess may range from light discomfort in the localized area to severe pain. The pain is continuous and may be described as extreme, growing, sharp, shooting, or throbbing. Putting pressure or warmth on the tooth may induce extreme pain. The area may be sensitive to touch and possibly swollen as well. This swelling may be present at either the base of the tooth, the gum, and/or the cheek, and sometimes can be reduced by applying ice packs.” (Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia)
How are Dental Abscesses Treated?
“Successful treatment of a dental abscess centers on the reduction and elimination of the offending organisms. This can include treatment with antibiotics and drainage. If the tooth can be restored, root canal therapy can be performed. Non-restorable teeth must be extracted, followed by curettage of all apical soft tissue.” (Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia)
It is possible for a dental abscess to heal improperly due to a number of factors. Risks include cyst formation, inadequate root canal therapy, vertical root fractures, foreign materials in the lesion, associated periodontal disease and penetration from the maxillary sinus.
Learn more about Dental Abscess in our glossary.
“Dental Abscess.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 13 Dec. 2014.