Have you noticed your child holding their cheek? We know you don’t want your child to suffer from a dental infection. Call Drs. James and Samuel Owens if you suspect your child may have a dental issue. We are always here to help diagnose symptoms at 918.455.7700.
Seeing your child in pain is always difficult. That’s why our dental office wants to make sure you know the signs and symptoms of a dental infection. If left untreated, an infection can damage other teeth and even spread to other areas of the body.
But, first, let’s talk about what a dental infection is and why it’s such an important health issue.
A tooth abscess, or dental infection, is a pocket of pus fluid caused by bacteria inside a tooth. Pus forms when the body tries to fight an infection caused by bacteria. Many times, the infected area will look completely normal. This is often a more painful situation, as the pus is contained inside the bone causing an increase in pressure and pain. However, usually, the area will likely be tender, soft, and swollen, and will look like a pimple on the surrounding gum. If you press the bubble, you may see a discharge of liquid.
If you notice any of the following signs in your child, you should seek prompt attention. These are signs that your child is likely to be experiencing a dental issue:
· a painful tooth
· a tooth that is darker in color
· sensitivity or pain when chewing
· swollen and red gums and/or a swollen neck or jaw
· a bitter taste in the mouth and bad breath
· loss of appetite and weight
· fever or other illness
You may be wondering how bacteria get inside a tooth. Usually, bacteria enter the tooth through a crack or cavity in the tooth.
In children, tooth decay, when bacteria break down the teeth, is the main cause of a tooth abscess. Tooth decay is also the most common chronic childhood disease, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists. Tooth decay can lead to cavities. Cavities are common — by the age of 5, about 60 percent of U.S. children will have had cavities at some point. But the real problem is when cavities go untreated, possibly leading to infection.
Children are at a greater risk for dental infections than adults because they do not have mature immune systems. A dental abscess will not get better or go away without treatment. Only a dentist can treat the infection and stop it from spreading. So, if you note any of the symptoms above, please call our dental office.