What is a Tooth Infection?

Your teeth are full of nerves, which is why a toothache, although it only impacts part of your mouth, is no minor matter. Dental pain can be debilitating, and it’s usually the result of an underlying problem. You might have a tooth infection, resulting in sensitivity, soreness, and sharp pain. 

Continue reading to learn more about tooth infection. 

Information on Tooth Infection

A tooth infection can occur due to a variety of reasons. Still, they primarily happen as the result of untreated tooth decay or a cracked tooth, according to the American Dental Association (ADA). If bacteria penetrate your tooth’s enamel, it can spread to the tender nerves in the tooth’s pulp tissue, which can cause an abscess. Abscessed teeth require treatment from your oral surgeon, and the longer you wait to seek help, the more complex and painful the infection becomes. 

Discover the signs of a tooth infection in today’s blog. 

Signs of Tooth Infection

A throbbing tooth and a sore throat are some of the first symptoms of an infection, and if left untreated, they can escalate to redness and swelling. Excessive swelling is an indication of a fever that your body may develop as an attempt to fight off the oral infection.

Furthermore, you may also notice a foul taste and bad breath that won’t go away, no matter how many times you brush and floss your teeth. Unfortunately, you might even have a broken tooth because infections usually go undetected within the core of the teeth. You may not notice any noticeable signs apart from pain and swelling. 

If you’re experiencing the following symptoms, your cavity may have progressed to an infection:

  • Fever
  • Swollen cheeks
  • Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Throbbing pain in the jawbone, neck, or tooth
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • Pressure-related sensitivity 

If you experience swelling, fever, difficulty breathing, and swallowing, you should urgently seek medical attention because these are symptoms of severe infection that may have spread to your jawbone.

Risk Factors for Tooth Infection

Although tooth infections occur due to a variety of reasons, you may be more at risk if you experience the following:

Poor oral care: Neglecting your teeth and gums by not brushing twice a day or flossing can increase your risk of gum disease, tooth decay or infection, and other dental problems. 

Consuming too much sugar: Eating and drinking foods and beverages high in sugar, such as sweets and sodas, can cause dental cavities that can turn into a tooth abscess. 

Dry mouth: Having a dry mouth can increase your chances of experiencing tooth decay. Dry mouth usually occurs as a side effect of certain medications or aging issues. 

Oral & Facial Surgery of Utah is Here for You

A tooth infection can impact your entire mouth as well as the rest of your body. If you suspect you have an infection, you should consult with an oral surgeon immediately because you may require a tooth extraction procedure.

At Oral & Facial Surgery of Utah, our board-certified oral surgeons specialize in tooth extraction, dental implant insertion, bone grafting, corrective jaw surgery, and more. Our promise to you is a transparent and professional experience with your best interests at heart.

We have offices in Cottonwood Heights, South Jordan, and Tooele. Schedule your free consultation today

What is a Tooth Infection?