I don’t know what to do. I have a tooth infection. I went to the dentist and he prescribed me antibiotics. I’ve been taking them regularly. While things seemed to get better for a short time, it seems to have gotten worse again. The area under my eye is beginning to swell. I’m worried this is spreading. Do I need a different antibiotic? When I talked to my dentist he said I need to finish the antibiotic. I’m getting worried.
You have a right to be concerned in this situation. I’m truly hoping there is some miscommunication between you and your dentist. If the only thing he’s doing for your treatment is antibiotics then you are going to a dentist who doesn’t understand tooth infections. As this would be dentistry 101, you’d definitely need a new dentist.
Antibiotics Don’t Work for Tooth Infections
When a tooth becomes infected the tissue inside the tooth dies, this means the antibiotic doesn’t even reach the infected pulp because there is no longer any circulation in the tooth. While the infection will seem to get better at first, it will again begin to spread. This is what is happening to you.
The only way to get rid of a tooth infection is to physically remove the infected tissue. This can be done one of two ways. The first is to open up the tooth and remove the infected portions, then seal it so the bacteria can’t return. This is a root canal treatment. The second way to remove the infected pulp is to extract the tooth. I’d only recommend that as a last resort.
Tooth Infections are Dental Emergencies
Think about how close your tooth is to your brain and heart. As your infection spreads, and it will spread, if it reaches those areas it can become life-threatening quickly. This is why tooth infections are considered a dental emergency and needs to be treated physically by a dentist.
You need to see a different dentist and have a root canal treatment done. Hopefully, there is still a way to save your tooth. If not, you’ll need to have an extraction and then a good replacement for your tooth. The best tooth replacement option is a dental implant. There are other options, though. Make sure your dentist gives you all of them.
This blog is brought to you by Lexington Dentist Dr. Fred Arnold.