It ain’t pretty. You have a pus-filled sore on your gums and as if that weren’t bad enough, you also have a throbbing, pounding toothache. Some people have said that a toothache is worse than labor pains. If you’ve got a toothache, you know pain. You need instant relief and don’t know what to do. You need to call your dentist right away.
Do you have a bump, lump or blister in your mouth accompanied by pain? You could have an abscessed tooth. This is a serious condition that needs to be evaluated by a dentist immediately. If you have an abscess, then you have an infection and it requires medical treatment. Did you know that infections in your mouth can spread to the rest of your body and impact your overall health? Don’t try to “wait it out” and see if it goes away.
An abscessed tooth usually has a pus-filled sack between your tooth and your gums and is usually accompanied by a severe or throbbing toothache. If you need more information on what an abscessed tooth is or how to find a dentist in your area to help you, visit the website of the American Dental Association at www.ada.org.
Symptoms of an abscessed tooth as listed on www.ada.org:
- “A constant ache.
- Sensitivity to heat and cold.
- Throbbing, especially if it occurs with no clear cause and is unrelated to biting or chewing.
- Pain when biting or chewing.
- Redness and swelling of the gums.
- Tender glands in the neck.
- Swollen face.
- A bad taste in your mouth.
- Unpleasant drainage.
- An open, draining sore on the side of the gum.”
If you suspect that you may have an abscessed tooth, your first course of action should be to set up an appointment with your dentist. If you need a dentist, you can visit www.ada.org as mentioned earlier, or visit www.smilemichigan.com to find a member of the Michigan Dental Association.
Your dentist will need to evaluate your mouth by performing a thorough examination and possibly taking x-rays of your teeth. His or her first priority will likely be to address the infection in your mouth by draining the abscess if possible. Antibiotics are sometimes necessary but your dentist will determine whether or not you need any medication. A root canal may be necessary to fix your tooth but again, this is something your dentist will determine.
Remember, it is not advisable to try to “wait it out” when you experience an abscess in your mouth. Letting an infection run rampant allows the infection to damage your bone and gums. To help avoid dental infections, you should visit your dentist every six months for a cleaning and checkup.