Problems with your teeth and gums can cause many other issues in other parts of your body.
It might seem like a minor inconvenience, but an infection in your mouth can spread and cause all sorts of problems, some of which might not immediately be obvious.
Signs and Symptoms of a Tooth Infection
The symptoms of tooth infection can vary depending on how advanced the infection is, but some common ones include:
- an abscess (a pus-filled bubble)
- throbbing pain in tooth, jawbone, ear, or neck
- painful sensitivity to hold and cold
- painful sensitivity to pressure
- bad breath
- unpleasant taste in your mouth
- swollen cheek
- swollen lymph nodes
Complications of a Tooth Infection
If you have an abscess or tooth infection, you must see your dentist immediately.
Left untreated, a tooth infection can soon lead to more severe complications, including:
- fever and chills
- rapid heartbeat
- rapid breathing
Why This Happens
The mouth is full of bacteria. Not all bacteria are bad—some types are actually good for you and help to keep your mouth healthy.
But sometimes, bad bacteria can get into your gums and teeth and cause an infection.
This can happen if you have a cavity or a cracked tooth, and it’s much more likely to happen if you don’t brush and floss regularly.
Tooth infections can usually be treated relatively easily. But if you neglect to see your dentist and get help, the infection can spread to the tissues, bones, and blood vessels around your teeth. It can also spread beyond your face and neck area to other parts of your body.
How to Prevent This
The best way to prevent a tooth infection is to practice good oral hygiene and visit your dentist regularly.
Brush at least twice a day, floss at least once a day, and use mouthwash too.
Avoid sugary and acidic foods and drinks, which can damage your teeth.
If you have any signs of a tooth infection, see your dentist immediately to get it treated. The quicker you can get the infection treated, the less likely it is that you’ll experience any serious complications.
If you have a fever, swelling, rapid heart rate, rapid breathing rate, and stomach pain, these might be connected to your toothache. Seek medical attention immediately before it becomes a life-threatening emergency.