Taking care of your mouth is not just about keeping your teeth strong and healthy or your gums firm and pinkish. It’s also about effective prevention of serious oral health diseases like dental infections. That’s why dental professionals continue to remind us about keeping our oral health in good condition.
It has been recognised that oral infection, such as gum disease, may affect the course and manner of development of several systemic diseases like heart disease, diabetes mellitus, bacterial pneumonia and low birth weight. Dental infection can be life threatening, especially if it develops from an untreated dental abscess.
A dental abscess is a collection of pus. It develops in your teeth and spreads to the surrounding tissue. If not treated quickly enough, the infection can cause complications and fatal illness. A dental professional can help prevent this from happening.
Causes and Risk Factors of Dental Infection
Periapical abscess and periodontal abscess are the two main types of dental abscess. The periapical abscess forms under the tooth. The periodontal abscess forms in the supporting gum and bone. These two are caused by bacteria build-up inside your mouth due to the combination of the following factors:
- Poor oral hygiene – when you don’t clean your mouth properly such as doing proper brushing and flossing techniques. Not taking proper care of your teeth and gums can increase your risk of tooth decay, gum disease, abscess and other mouth diseases.
- Sugary food and drink consumption – eating too many starchy or sweet foods and drinking fizzy beverages encourages the bacteria to grow, which causes tooth decay.
In addition, poor dental hygiene and a diet high in sugar are also factors that increase your risk of a dental abscess. That’s why good dental care and a healthy diet should go together when it comes to preventing oral health problems.
Possible Complications of Dental Infection
Untreated dental abscess can be fatal in rare situations. The bacterial infection from an abscess can be very dangerous if it starts to spread to your jaw, neck or brain. This is the time when an overlooked abscess can be life-threatening. Here are the possible complications of dental infection:
- Infection of nearby bone
- Spread of infection to the nearby sinus in the facial bone
- Development of a dental fluid-filled cavity
- Infection and clotting of a blood vessel in the brain
- Development of a serious and life-threatening infection of the floor of the mouth, which could spread to the face, brain or neck.
Dental Treatments for Dental Infection
Your dentist will treat the abscess in the tooth by draining the pus from the abscess to get rid of the infection. They may also perform root canal therapy to remove the infection on the affected tooth or recommend tooth extraction if the tooth can’t be saved. Your dentist may also prescribe antibiotics to stop the infection from spreading further to nearby teeth, jaw or other areas. In addition, if you have a weakened immune system, your dentist may also recommend this medication.
See Your Dentist in Sunshine Coast
Your overall oral health can have a significant impact on your body. If you have any infections in your mouth, don’t hesitate to visit your Sunshine Coast dentist immediately. At Smiles Nambour, we have all the knowledge and skills to help you prevent any type of oral health diseases. By doing a comprehensive examination of your case, we can recommend the best course of action to remove the infection and keep your mouth and body free from harmful bacterial infection.