What is an Abscessed Tooth?

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An abscessed tooth is a painful infection that is usually located at the root of the tooth or between the tooth and gums. Generally, abscessed teeth are caused by serious dental decay, but they can also be caused by trauma, gingivitis or gum disease. When your tooth abscesses, bacteria infect the center of the tooth, causing rapid decay and intense pain. Abscesses in teeth can spread to surrounding bone and cause life-threatening complications.

What are the Symptoms?

Our teeth normally are well-protected against pain. The outer enamel and inner dentin layers are not able to feel pain. The fleshy, nerve-filled pulp of the tooth, however, is very sensitive to pain, and this is exactly what the abscess infects. This causes deep pain to radiate from the tooth. Pain is the most common indication that a patient has an abscessed tooth, but other symptoms exist as well. Mild aching, sensitivity to temperature extremes, swelling, bad breath, a nasty or bitter taste in the mouth, or even no symptoms at all can also occur.


Complications that Can Occur

The best possible thing that you can do if you suspect that you have an abscessed tooth is to call Norcross Dental Associates immediately. If you do not deal with your abscessed tooth immediately, there are several complications that can occur. The infection can spread to other areas of the mouth, which may lead to the loss of a tooth. The infection may eat away at the bones to which it is attached, causing facial disfigurement.


If left untreated, an abscessed tooth can even lead to death. The infection can spread to areas surrounding the tooth and cause extreme swelling that ultimately can hinder breathing. If the infection makes its way into your bloodstream, it can compromise the immune system and infect major organs, ultimately ending in organ failure.


If you believe you have an abscessed tooth, it is important for you to get treatment immediately to stave off any potential complications. Call our offices today; the talented dentists at Norcross Dental Associates will be able to diagnose your issue and get you on the road to having healthy teeth and gums.