Toothaches are annoying at best — and deadly at worst. Unfortunately, many people ignore mouth pain, reasoning that they can deal with it or hoping that it will go on away on its own. Such an attitude is dangerous because it allows the problem that is causing the toothache to worsen, sometimes to the point where it leads to life-threatening complications, such as sepsis. Let’s take a moment to talk about the sepsis and toothache relation in Pasadena; what you learn may motivate you to see your dentist ASAP the next time one of your pearly whites starts hurting.
What Is Sepsis?
The human body has a complex immune system that is designed to aggressively battle infections. In most cases, it performs this duty very well and helps us to stay healthy despite any little microbes that might sneak into our blood. In other cases, though, a bacterial infection becomes so severe that the immune system “goes nuclear” in its attempts to fight in. Basically, this means that the body fights the infection with such indiscriminate vigor that it ends up attacking itself. This condition, known as sepsis, can be life-threatening without proper treatment.
How a Toothache Leads to Sepsis
Oftentimes, an infection is the cause of a toothache. Due to decay or drama, bacteria are allowed to access the tooth’s innermost layer, the pulp. Thus, the pulp becomes inflamed, and the nerve inside it sends some major pain signals to the brain. But the problems don’t stop there. The infection may form an abscess and even sneak into the bloodstream. As a result, you could experience fever, aches and pains, and yes, even sepsis.
If you’ve been coping with a toothache, and now you’re starting to feel ill all over, it’s important that you receive medical attention as soon as possible. A professional can evaluate the situation and provide treatment to help your body battle the infection.
Preventing Toothache-Related Sepsis
The best way to prevent toothache-related sepsis is to prevent toothaches in the first place. By sticking to a good oral hygiene routine and attending regular checkups with your dentist, you can help your tooth’s protective layers — the enamel and dentin — stay strong enough to shield the pulp from bacterial invasions.
If you do end up with a toothache, schedule a visit with your emergency dentist right away. You may need root canal therapy, a treatment wherein the dentist cleans out the infected portion of the tooth and then fills in the tooth with a special material to help it maintain its structure. You may also require antibiotic therapy as well as a crown to protect the tooth from further damage.
A toothache is never something to take lightly. Seeking prompt treatment will not only relieve your pain, but it could even save your life!
About the Author
Dr. Linda Sierra is a general dentist with decades of experience in her field. Today, she and her son, Dr. Christopher Sierra, work together to provide excellent oral health care services to our community. They are often able to see emergency patients on the same day they call, so if you are experiencing a toothache in Pasadena, or you have questions about your oral health, don’t hesitate to contact our team at 714-943-2094.