Symptoms of an Infected Tooth

Root canal therapy is a treatment for an infected tooth. This occurs when a cavity penetrates the innermost chamber of your tooth, allowing bacteria to spread into the tooth’s interior. The bacterial infection will slowly kill off the tooth from within, but as this happens you might notice many different symptoms, such as:

  • Pain
  • Sensitivity
  • Discolored tooth
  • Discharge from tooth or gums
  • Pimple-like sore on the gums
  • Foul smell or taste from tooth
  • Local warmth around the tooth
  • Fever

Most people experience pain from an infected tooth. This pain can be spontaneous, and it might be the most severe tooth pain you’ve ever experienced. It might prevent you from doing anything, including sleeping. It might be so severe that it radiates out through your entire body. For other people, pain from an infected tooth is just temperature or pressure sensitivity. Some people experience no pain from their infected teeth. Then you need to look for other symptoms such as discoloration of just one tooth, or a pus-like discharge from your tooth or gums. You might see a pimple-like sore around the tooth, feel localized warmth, or notice chronic bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth.

In general, treat an infected tooth as an urgent priority. If you develop a fever related to your infected tooth, consider it an emergency and seek treatment immediately.

How Root Canal Therapy Works

For most infections, antibiotics are used to control bacteria. However, the tooth is different. The tooth’s limited blood supply makes it somewhat isolated from the body, so general antibiotics aren’t always effective. Even if they work, the infection is likely to return.

To treat an infected tooth, root canal therapy cleans out the infection, as well as the rest of the living material in the tooth chamber. We fill the chamber with a material that is physically like your living tooth material, but is inert—doesn’t hurt, and isn’t likely to get infected. Then the chamber is sealed off with a filling, or a carbon fiber post and dental crown.

The repaired tooth can look and function just like any other tooth. It can now last for decades with proper care.

Root canal therapy depends on your tooth being in good condition. If your tooth isn’t healthy or strong enough for root canal therapy, we might recommend extraction and replacement with a dental implant.

Don’t Fear Root Canal Therapy

We know that root canal therapy has a reputation as a painful treatment. However, it actually resolves pain more than causes it. Within a few days, people report that the discomfort is less than it was before their procedure.

Get Relief from an Infected Tooth

If you have an infected tooth and are looking for relief in Sterling Heights, let Dr. Ray Skowronski or Dr. Kyle Katynski help. Please call (586) 977-8413 today for an appointment at Skowronski Family Dentistry in Sterling Heights.