Whether a dull ache that creeps up on you gradually or a sudden sharp pain that rockets you out of bed at night, most of us are familiar with the side effects of dental infections. You may be tempted to take a few over-the-counter pain relievers and rub a bit of numbing gel on the infected area. However, treating dental infections is something that is best left to your Fort Worth, TX dentist, Dr. Sonia Smith. Dental infections are no laughing matter. Not only can they have an impact on your day-to-day life, but if left untreated an infection can lead to much more serious long-term medical concerns.
Lack of Preventative Dental Care
We all know about the toll that a lack of dental hygiene can take on our teeth, gums, and overall mouth. But even with brushing and flossing after every meal, it is important to be seen by your dentist, Dr. Smith, with good regularity. While good at-home dental care can go a long way to ensuring that you reduce plaque buildup and keep bacteria levels down, your dentist will be able to observe any areas of concern in their early stages. Keeping up with preventative dental care, cleanings, and of course, follow-ups for areas of concern will ensure that small issues do not escalate into full-blown painful infections.
Periodontal (Gum) Disease
A lot more common than what many of us may have once thought, gum disease can lead to major dental infections. A range of oral bacteria is responsible for gum disease and is not always the result of poor dental hygiene. Pockets filled with bacteria are formed around teeth. These ultimately give way to painful inflammation and swelling. You may find that your gums start to bleed when you brush your teeth; this is one of the signs of gum disease. If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to an infection in the tooth, tooth loss, bone loss, and an infection that gets into your bloodstream.
Dental caries, or cavities, are one of the most commonly seen oral infections. The result of tooth decay, cavities may start out relatively benign but if left untreated they can quickly lead to a more widespread infection in the tooth and surrounding gum tissue. Tooth loss is often a direct result of dental caries that were not seen to by a dentist.
Very painful, and often without a clear trigger, canker sores are small oral lesions that form on the soft tissues of your mouth. They can be caused by a range of concerns, including stress, medications, and food allergies. Without good oral hygiene, these types of infections can rapidly become infected.
The prevention of dental infections is as simple as ensuring you have great oral hygiene habits, and that your good oral health is maintained by Dr. Sonia Smith, DDS. In her Fort Worth, TX dental office, Dr. Smith and her team of professionals can help you with preventative treatments, and with ensuring any areas of concern are nipped in the bud before they have a chance to escalate into painful infections.