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Dental Abscess

woman with mouth painA dental abscess is a painful condition resulting from a bacterial infection. Tooth decay, untreated dental caries, periodontal disease, or a cracked tooth are some possible causes. These problems allow bacteria to enter the pulp (the soft tissue of a tooth that contains nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissue) and may lead to pulp death.

When pus builds up at the root tip of the jaw bone, it forms a pus pocket called an abscess. If the abscess is not treated, it may lead to a serious infection of the jaw bone, teeth, and surrounding tissues that could result in the loss of teeth or gum tissue affecting function and aesthetics in the long term.

Some common symptoms may include

  • Pain – patients may experience severe pain, especially when biting or chewing, often described as throbbing or aching
  • Swelling – swelling of the face or gums near the affected tooth is common
  • Bad taste – if the pus is draining into the mouth you may have a salty, metallic or sour taste
  • Difficulty Sleeping – pain and discomfort from the abscess can make it challenging to sleep at night
  • Need for Painkillers – patients may require painkillers to manage the intense discomfort

Finding the Right Treatment Options

Treating a dental abscess involves removing the infection and reducing the pain and swelling associated with it. Our dentist may drain the abscess to remove pus, reduce pressure and pain and prescribe antibiotics to fight the bacterial infection. Sometimes, a root canal procedure may be necessary to remove infected tissue and save the tooth. If tooth removal is required, we can talk you about replacement options for the missing tooth.

Potential Complications and Health Risks

Untreated dental abscesses may lead to severe complications and health risks, such as significant swelling of the face, which can affect appearance and comfort; the infection can spread to nearby tissues, leading to more extensive dental and health issues, and, in rare cases, untreated abscesses can lead to difficulty in breathing due to blocking the airway or sepsis, a severe and life-threatening infection of the bloodstream.

The Importance of Prompt Dental Care

If you experience symptoms of a dental abscess, such as severe pain, swelling, or difficulty sleeping, it’s crucial to seek prompt dental care. Our experienced dental team can diagnose and treat abscesses effectively, relieving and preventing potential complications.

Don’t delay treatment for dental abscesses, for yourself or in children. Contact us immediately for expert care and relief from pain and discomfort.


Dental Abscess, Cannington, Beckenham, East Cannington WA | (08) 9458 8646