A dental abscess is a serious infection that should be taken care of rapidly. An abscess originates from either a tooth or from the gums around a tooth. If an abscess is not treated, not only it can lead to intense pain and swelling, but also to serious complications:

  • When the abscess infects the gums around a tooth and the bone that holds it, tooth loss may occur because when too much bone is damaged, the tooth moves more and more and eventually may fall out.
  • If the abscess’s origin is a cavity, the decay continues to grow if it’s not treated, which can destroy a tooth completely leading to tooth extraction.
  • When the infection from a tooth abscess spreads to the brain through blood vessels, the person may have a brain abscess. This situation which is even more serious may lead to a coma and becomes more difficult to treat.
  • Tooth abscess can become a sinus infection because the roots of upper molars are located right beneath the sinuses. If the dental abscess produces pus, sinuses may fill with this pus coming from the infected teeth.
  • When bacteria from a dental abscess reach the heart through blood vessels, this infection is referred to bacterial endocarditis.
  • Ludwig’s angina is a serious infection which affects parts of the face and the lower jaw. It usually originates from an untreated tooth abscess. The danger is that it can grow enough to block the airways, causing suffocation and even death.

The information above should be used as a reference only. Any medical decision should not be taken before consulting a health care professional.

The masculine gender may have been more used in the article, but without prejudice, to make reading easier.

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