How to Drain a Tooth Abscess at Home
If you experience dental pain and think you have a tooth abscess, you might hope you can take care of it at home. You may wonder how to drain a tooth abscess at home or what your tooth abscess treatment options will be. Find out what you can do for an abscess at home and when it’s time to see your dentist.
Symptoms of a Tooth Abscess
Tooth abscesses can happen to anyone as a result of an untreated cavity, a dental fracture or injury, gum disease, or even prior dental work. Abscesses are actually bacterial infections that cause pockets of pus in the affected area. You can get abscesses in your gums, at the tip of the root of your tooth, or even in the bone and tissues that support your teeth. Generally speaking, you’ll know when you have an abscess because the infection can cause the following symptoms:
- A rush of salty or foul-smelling or tasting fluid in your mouth, along with pain relief
- Difficulty biting, chewing, swallowing, or breathing
- Feeling generally unwell
- Pain and aching in the tooth that radiates to the ear, jawbone, or neck
- Redness and swelling in the gums
- Sensitivity to pressure and temperature
- Swelling in the cheek or face
- Swollen and tender lymph nodes along the jaw and neck
- Visible sore in the gums
Is an Abscess Tooth Home Remedy Enough?
If you suspect you have a tooth abscess, you may be tempted to learn how to drain a tooth abscess at home. Unfortunately, because an abscess is an infection, it won’t go away on its own without treatment. Home remedies for an abscessed tooth simply aren’t enough to remove the infection. If you try to depend on abscess tooth home remedy solutions alone, you risk spreading the infection, which has significant consequences.
If the infection is not resolved, it could spread to your jaw, skin, brain, and other parts of your body. At that point, you’re at risk of developing sepsis, which is a medical emergency. As such, even if your abscess ruptures on its own, it should be assessed and drained thoroughly by a dentist to ensure that your infection doesn’t spread further.
Tooth Abscess Treatment
Any suspected abscess should be seen by your dentist so they can clear the infection properly. Tooth abscess treatment can include:
- Antibiotics to help resolve the infection and prevent it from spreading
- Draining the abscess and washing it out properly
- Extraction of the affected tooth if it can’t be saved
- Root canal to save the tooth and eliminate infection
There are also home remedies for an abscessed tooth that may help relieve the symptoms until you receive treatment from your dentist. These may also be beneficial after any procedures to resolve the abscess. Home remedies can include:
- Applying a cold compress to the affected area
- Rinsing with warm salt water to reduce pain, sensitivity, and bacteria growth
- Rinsing with baking soda solution or applying baking soda paste to reduce bacteria and pain
- Taking over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen
As a reminder, although you may find articles telling you how to drain a tooth abscess at home, it’s dangerous and inadvisable, as you could do yourself more harm and the infection may spread further. Even if your abscess ruptures, you still need to see your dentist to treat and clear the infection.
See Your Dentist to Prevent and Treat Tooth Abscesses
Excellent oral hygiene and regular dental visits are the best way to avoid a tooth abscess. If you have obvious tooth decay or damage, see your dentist as soon as you can to avoid developing an abscess. If you notice symptoms that may indicate you already have an infection, make a dentist appointment right away. With prompt, professional treatment, you have a better chance of saving your tooth and preventing the infection from spreading.
To learn more about keeping your mouth as healthy as possible and how this can impact your overall health, order your copy of If Your Mouth Could Talk today.