|Dr. Alan Wishneff D.D.S.
Restorative Dentistry / Oral Health
June 18, 2014
A dental abscess forms when there is an infection in the mouth that has been caused by an infected tooth or cavity.
When you feel like you are getting a dental abscess, you should see your dentist as soon as possible. If you can’t get to your dentist and pain becomes too much to handle, you should go to the hospital and seek an immediate evaluation. When an infection becomes so painful that over the counter pain medication stops working, you dentist or doctor might have to drain the abscess in the office.
A dentist or a doctor can determine if the dental abscess is forming with a physical exam. They will be able to tell if it is drain-able by examining it. Small abscesses that are in the deepest part of the tooth may need to be found by using an x-ray.
If your dental abscess is manageable, you can treat it at home. For the pain and inflammation, take inflammatory medicines like ibuprofen or naproxen. If the abscess ruptures on its own, rinse the area with warm water. This will help cleanse the mouth and encourage drainage. If you need to see the dentist, they may decide to cut it open and allow it drain out. This is the only way that the infection can be cured. Then you will normally be prescribed pain relievers and antibiotics. If the abscess has extended to the floor of the mouth or the neck, you may need to have it drained in an operating room under anesthesia.
Once an abscess ruptures and is drained, the prognosis gets better in the area. After the symptoms start to go away or improve, it is unlikely that the infection will get any worse. You will have to go to the dentist for follow-up care. The main problem for the cause of the abscess, which is the infected tooth, also needs to be taken care of. If the tooth is in bad shape, it might need to be pulled or a root canal may need to be performed.
The best way to prevent a dental abscess is to maintain good dental health. Brush and floss your teeth daily and keep your regular dental checkups. This will help prevent tooth decay from forming and leading to the abscess. If you do start to form tooth decay, it can be caught early and treated before it gets out of hand.
For more information about this topic or any other dental topic, contact Dr.Wishneff at [email protected] or call (561) 488-3111. Dr. Alan Wishneff is a Boca Raton Dentist dedicated to bringing patients state-of-the-art dental care. As a cosmetic, family and restorative dentist, he helps patients enjoy a natural and healthy smile. He is trained in cosmetic dentistry, including porcelain veneers; advanced cosmetic bonding techniques; oral surgery; medical emergency procedures; advanced crown and bridge; advanced TMJ; implant dentistry; endodontics-root canals: utilization of most advanced dental materials. Dr, Wishneff and staff are dedicated to providing great smiles in Boca Raton for more than 30 years. After more than two decades of practicing dentistry in Boca Raton, Dr. Wishneff is more committed than ever to this community.