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Abscess or Swelling

Swelling can be caused by many different things, primarily it is a sign of bacterial infection. If the swelling starts to affect your ability to breath or ability to see, then you ought to attend A&E for management.

Swellings in the mouth are often caused by dental abscesses. They are effectively when spaces fill up with pus and cells from your body’s immune system. They can affect your gums, teeth or the bone surrounding your teeth.

If they affect the gums it can be because food/debris/bacteria have got stuck in the gums and the build-up of bacteria cause the abscess to form.

If the abscess is related to teeth, it is because decay has got to the nerve of the tooth and it has effectively ‘died’. As a result, the bacteria travel out of the tooth through the roots. The body tries to ensure the bacteria do not travel any further so therefore it creates the abscess. Though decay is the most common cause it can also be due to injury to teeth (trauma).

Some of the signs and symptoms you might experience include:

Self-help Advice

Professional Treatment Available (following detailed history and examination)

If your swelling relates to wisdom teeth, please see our Wisdom Teeth page

 

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