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Complications That Can Come from Untreated Abscesses

Posted on 11/20/2018 by Dr. Simon K Choyee
Complications That Can Come from Untreated AbscessesWhen a person has tooth pain, they often ignore it. They hope that it is temporary and will go away. The problem is that there are times when the pain does go away. That does not mean that the problem causing the pain is gone. It could just mean that the problem is getting worse.

Over time the pain in the tooth can lead to an infection and tat infection can lead to an abscess. When a person ignores that they are opening themselves up to a series of complications that they may not expect.

What is an Abscess?

If you tell a person they have a cavity, they may know that means they have a hole in their tooth and they need a filling. If you tell them they have an abscess, they may not completely understand what that means and how to treat it.

A cavity is the result of bacteria eating a hole in the tooth. An abscess forms when pus fills the cavity in the tooth and gums. The treatment for a dental abscess is typically draining the abscess and a root canal procedure. Extraction and antibiotics may also be a part of the treatment. Many people are afraid of the treatment and avoid it.


Not getting treatment for an abscess can lead to a variety of complications. These can include:

•  Increasing pain - Over time, the pain from an abscess will usually get worse. It can get to a point where the individual cannot function normally.
•  Facial swelling - The pus in the abscess can lead to swelling around the tooth and the face that becomes more noticeable.
•  Fever - Like many infections, fever is a sign of a problem.
•  Rapid heart rate - The infection can cause a person's heart to beat faster than normal.

Besides these problems, the infection can spread to other parts of the body and can lead to serious health issues including death. Many people have ended up in the emergency room because of an untreated dental abscess.

Contact our office immediately if you suspect you have a dental abscess. Schedule an appointment as soon as possible before the problem gets worse.
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