- ADA: mouthhealthy.org
An abscessed tooth is an infection caused by tooth decay, periodontal disease or a cracked tooth. These problems can let bacteria enter the pulp (the soft tissue of a tooth that contains nerves, blood vessels and connective tissue) and can lead to pulp death. When pus builds up at the root tip in the jaw bone, it forms a pus-pocket called an abscess. If the abscess is not treated, it can lead to a serious infection in the jaw bone, teeth and surrounding tissues.
Symptoms of an abscess include:
redness in the gums
bad taste in the mouth
An abscessed tooth can be treated with various treatments, depending on the severity of the infection. Here are some of the treatment methods a dentist may consider:
antibiotics, to destroy the bacteria causing the infection
drainage of the infection
cleaning the space between the tooth and the gum if the cause is from gum disease
root canal treatment if the abscess is caused by decay or a cracked tooth
Following good oral hygiene practices and routine dental exams will significantly reduce your risk of developing a tooth abscess. If your teeth experience trauma (become loosened or chipped), see your dentist as soon as possible.
This article, along with additional links, can be found at: https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/a/abscess