Left Untreated, Tooth Infections Pose a Health Risk

Dental patient with toothache

Serious dental emergencies can’t simply be willed away no matter how hard a patient tries to ignore it or deny it exists. But a problem such as a dental infection has the potential to have serious consequences for health if treatment is not sought promptly. A study published in the Journal of Dental Research poses a convincing argument on the dangers of avoiding proper dental care. The worrying finding was that those who did not attend to the infection with professional dental care were 2.7 times more at risk of experiencing cardiovascular problems than those who do.

Why untreated tooth infections are dangerous

Infections most often occur when tooth decay advances to the centre of the tooth, affecting the nerves and pulp tissue and bacteria is allowed exit the bottom of the bone and enter into the bloodstream where the danger lies in compromising health. Due to the mouth’s close proximity to the brain, dental infections have the potential to cause further infections to develop in the brain.

The timely intervention of a dentist is the most effective way to ensure a tooth infection does not progress and result in serious complications. A root canal will be carried out to ensure the infection is thoroughly cleaned out and then the tooth is ready to be repaired. Depending on the seriousness of the infection, sometimes antibiotics are prescribed to help treat it. A dentist in Southgate has the appropriate equipment and expertise to ascertain the extent of the infection and recommend appropriate methods of treatment.

Symptoms of root infection

The three common signs that indicate the infection of the tooth’s root is the pain experienced when pressure is placed on the tooth, tooth discolouration and swelling. Minor infections that go undetected can lead to more severe symptoms developing such as fever, difficulty in breathing and trouble swallowing. Such symptoms suggest that the infection has reached the jawbone and localized areas. It is highly recommended that at this stage, urgent dental attention is sought.

Prevention is the first line of defence

Dentist doing dental procedures

In the face of the pressing nature of dental infections, a good question to ask is why do people suffer the pain rather than seek care. Dental phobia is one major challenge that prevents many from seeking necessary treatment. It is reported that an astounding five million people admit to not visiting a dentist in as many as ten years in the UK.

The best way to prevent infections from developing in the first place is good oral hygiene habits. A top priority is to have a qualified dental practitioner examine the condition of teeth and general state of the mouth routinely. Specialised equipment such as dental x-rays is relied on to provide a conclusive analysis of teeth health and useful in detecting the formation of cavities. Should there be any early warning signs; the necessary steps can be taken to avoid risk and further problems in the future. In between visits, it is essential to maintain a brushing and flossing routine that also includes the use of mouthwash.

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