A tooth infection or abscess can spread the surrounding bone and gum tissue, and the pain can become more severe. If you are experiencing signs of an infected tooth, you should see your dentist as soon as possible. Though treatment is necessary to resolve the issue, you can take steps to manage your pain until then.
Signs your tooth is infected
If you’ve ever experienced a tooth infection, you know it can be very uncomfortable. A tooth infection is typically accompanied with a pocket of pus caused by a bacterial infection. The abscess can be found anywhere in the mouth.
There are two types of abscesses. A periapical abscess occurs at the tip of the root, whereas a periodontal abscess occurs in the gums, usually near the side of the tooth.
A periapical tooth abscess usually occurs as a result of an untreated dental cavity. If the interior of your tooth (filled with dental pulp), encounters any unknown substance, it can inflame the blood vessels and nerves, impacting the tooth enamel. Endodontic treatment helps treat tooth decay and other infected materials to help seal and fight future infections.
Rick Davis, DDS, and Rick Schwartz, DDS, are experts in endodontics at Endodontic Consultants of San Antonio. If you are experiencing severe tooth pain, visit a specialist who can diagnose and help treat it.
Signs and symptoms of an infected tooth
You may have an infected or abscessed tooth if you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Painful throbbing in your tooth, jawbone or near your neck
- Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
- Sensitivity to the pressure (chewing or biting)
- Swelling in your face
- Swollen lymph nodes under your jaw or neck
- A salty fluid taste in your mouth
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
Contact your dentist if you think you may have an infection, and consider the below home remedies to soothe your symptoms until then.
Home remedies for immediate relief
When you suspect an infected tooth, there are a few home remedies you can try. These remedies are temporary. You should make an appointment with your dentist as soon as you feel severe pain. To ease the pain immediately, you can take over-the-counter medications such as Advil, Tylenol or Motrin IB.
Rinse with salt water
Rinsing with salt water creates a saline mixture to safely begin sterilizing the infection. Mix 1/2 teaspoon of table salt with 1/2 cup of warm tap water. Swish in your mouth for a few minutes before spitting. Repeat every few hours if needed.
Make a baking soda paste
Baking soda is a quick and effective way to ease an infected tooth. Mix 1/2 tablespoon of baking soda with 1/2 cup of water and a bit of table salt. Swish in your mouth for a few minutes and again until the mixture is gone.
When in doubt, place a cold compress on the infected area. Take a cold compress to the infected area for 15 minutes at a time. Repeat as needed. This remedy will help numb the area and decrease inflammation.
While there are home remedies for an infected tooth, your safest bet is to schedule an appointment with your Endodontic Doctor. Call or book an appointment at Endodontic Consultants of San Antonio to lessen the pain and cure your infected tooth.
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