If you’ve ever had to call the dentist because of a painful tooth, you may have heard of abscessed teeth. Abscessed teeth are not necessarily common dental ailments, but they are often the likely culprit behind extreme pain in a small location in your mouth.


An abscessed tooth is usually a painful infection of a single tooth, though it can spread to nearby teeth. This infection is usually located at the root of the tooth, and it is usually the result of severe dental decay. Infection enters the root of the tooth through the decay and spreads. This typically causes intense pain.


The Symptoms of an Abscessed Tooth


The most obvious symptom of an abscessed tooth is pain. The infection that causes the abscess attacks the soft, nerve filled pulp of your tooth, and those nerves react with pain when the infection starts to destroy them. You may feel a deep, intense pain, or you may feel a milder throbbing or aching. Some patients do not report any pain, but this is rare.


Thanks to the decay that accompanies an abscessed tooth, you may experience other symptoms, including bad breath, a pervasive bad taste in your mouth, sensitivity to hot and cold, and even swelling.


If You Leave It Untreated…


If you leave an abscessed tooth untreated for too long, the abscess can spread to nearby teeth or even the bones and gums that surround the tooth. If the infection spreads too far, it can cause you to lose your teeth in that area. Extended spreading can also cause the decay of nearby bone tissue, which can result in your face becoming disfigured. If the infection is allowed to run rampant, it can spread from your mouth to other parts of the body, including the vital organs. Should the infection reach vital organs, it can infect them and ultimately cause you to lose your life.


Because an abscessed tooth has such life-threatening potential, it is vital for you to contact us if you believe that you may have an abscessed tooth. This is a dental emergency, and you should be sure to treat it as such.