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Dental Abscess

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Feb 4, 2024.

What is a dental abscess?

A dental abscess is a collection of pus in or around a tooth. A dental abscess is caused by bacteria. The bacteria can enter the tooth when the enamel (outer part of the tooth) is damaged by tooth decay. Bacteria can also enter the tooth through a chip in the tooth or a cut in the gum. Food particles that are stuck between the teeth for a long time may also lead to an abscess.

Dental Abscess

What increases my risk for a dental abscess?

What are the signs and symptoms of a dental abscess?

How is a dental abscess diagnosed?

Your healthcare provider will examine your teeth and gums. He or she will check for pus, redness, swelling, or a mass. You may need an x-ray to check for infection in deeper tissues or broken teeth.

How is a dental abscess treated?

Treatment options

The following list of medications are in some way related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

How can I manage my symptoms?

What can I do to prevent another dental abscess?

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I call my doctor or dentist?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.