4 Signs You Have a Serious Oral Infection


A dental condition known as a root canal infection occurs when bacteria enter the inner part of the teeth as a result of injury or undiagnosed and untreated cavities. Patients with a root canal infection should seek treatment as soon as possible because the infection can spread quickly if bacteria reaches the delicate pulp material inside the tooth. The root canal procedure is an effective technique for removing the infected pulp and saving the tooth.

Knowing the symptoms of a root canal infection can help you contact the dentist for timely dental care and treatment, preventing any further damage to your other teeth and overall well-being. Keep on reading for the main warning signs to be aware of.

1. Pain

The primary indication that you may have a root canal infection is extreme tooth pain, which should prompt you to seek urgent professional treatment. Your symptoms would typically get worse when you bite down or apply pressure to the affected tooth. Additionally, drinking or eating hot or cold things might make your teeth more sensitive.

In most cases, the region around the infected tooth becomes swollen and inflamed. Gum inflammation is another potential source of unpleasant symptoms, as your gums would become red and sensitive.

2. Tooth discoloration

If the inner layer of your tooth is unhealthy, it may seem brown or yellow. As the infection spreads, the pulp tissues inside the tooth would usually turn dark brown. This is typically the sign that an abscess has occurred. In such a case, your dentist can remove the dying or necrotic pulp material during root canal treatment and fill the empty space. A dental crown will also be used to improve the tooth's appearance.

3. Dental abscess

An abscess in the mouth often leads to bacteria and dying pulp material creating huge, pus-filled pockets around the affected tooth's root. These pockets typically look like enlarged or persistent red lumps or pimples on your gums, causing significant pain and bad breath. In addition, the pockets may begin to discharge a foul-smelling liquid.

To alleviate your symptoms, consider visiting a periodontist who can drain the painful abscess and eliminate the bacteria during the root canal procedure.

4. Persistent bad breath

Most of those with root canal infections have persistent bad breath. There is likely an infection if you fail to get rid of the unpleasant odor even after brushing, flossing, and rinsing your mouth.

The same bacteria that produce the infection often stand behind the bad smell and an unpleasant aftertaste in your mouth. The situation will worsen even further if the infection develops into a full-blown abscess.

The bottom line

The human body is often quite effective at fighting infections. However, sometimes those antibodies naturally produced in your system cannot reach the affected tooth. The odds of the tooth's nerves dying increase if the root canal becomes infected. Furthermore, if the dead nerve is not addressed quickly, infection-causing bacteria will stay there and thrive further. Your dentist might need to extract the dead tooth or perform a root canal to remove the dead pulp and cure the infection.

If you're dealing with any of the aforementioned symptoms, you may have a dental emergency that requires urgent care to prevent further problems. Failing to get timely treatment may potentially result in serious damage done to your teeth and gums, which could subsequently lead to tooth loss and associated problems like difficulty eating, trouble speaking clearly, and overall dissatisfaction with the appearance of your smile. Your best bet is to get in touch with a dental clinic and schedule an appointment ASAP. 

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Tuesday, 21 May 2024