If you have an oral abscess, then this accumulation of pus must be treated by a dental professional within a short period of time. Your dentist will decide on the treatment based on the location of the abscess. Locations include the gum tissues as well as the pulp chamber within the tooth. Keep reading to learn about what will happen when an abscess forms in one of these places.
Gum Tissue Abscess
Sometimes, an acute and localized infection will develop within the gum tissues, and a small encapsulation will form that builds with pus. The infection typically has not reached the inside of the tooth at this point, and it typically has not spread elsewhere like to the adjacent bone tissues. Spreading issues can happen, however, and your dentist will work to drain and flush the abscess to prevent this sort of issue.
The draining process must occur carefully to ensure that the pus, and especially the bacteria within the fluid material, does not travel into the mouth or throat. This means your dental professional will use a dam to section off the area. The abscess is then slowly lanced; this occurs with an opening that is just large enough to allow the pus to drain. The abscess is lightly pushed to ensure that all of the pus is released, and then saline is used to flush out any remaining infectious material. The area may be packed with antibiotic gauze, and you will be given a course of antibiotics to take to fully treat the infection.
If an abscess is located within the tooth, then a similar cleaning process will occur. However, instead of removing just the pus and the bacteria, all of the living tissue within the tooth, called the pulp, must be removed. There is simply no way to isolate the infected tissues from the healthy ones when cleaning out the tooth interior.
A root canal is performed to clear out the tooth. To begin, the dentist will create a hole through the top of the tooth. The pulp is then scraped away along with the pus, bacteria, and necrotic tissues. Once the professional gets to the deep root structures, the nerve is removed. Flushing occurs, and the interior may be packed with medication for a short period of time. This allows for the eradication of all bacteria before the tooth is filled in and sealed.
If you want to know more about tooth and oral infections and how they are treated, ask an oral health professional.