top of page

How Serious Is an Abscess Tooth?

If you are experiencing severe oral pain and swelling in one area of the mouth, then you may have an abscess tooth. What is it, what should you do, and what can happen if it’s left untreated? Keep reading to find out!

An abscess tooth is a common term, but there are actually two types of abscesses that can occur in the mouth:


A tooth-related abscess (also called a periodontal abscess) may occur inside the tooth when its nerve is dead or dying. This will appear at the tip of the tooth’s root and spread to the surrounding bone.


A gum abscess will cause a painful, swollen, bubble-like area on the gums when the inside of the mouth is damaged or irritated enough to become susceptible to the spread of bacteria, resulting in an infection.

More often than not, an abscess will fill with puss and cause a great deal of pain as a result of the pressure buildup within. It may start to resemble a pimple or a cyst. Because the abscess can form very quickly, it’s best to schedule a dentist appointment as soon as swelling or pain occurs in the mouth.

Due to the infection’s ability to spread rather quickly, this is considered a dental emergency and should be treated immediately. Call our emergency dentist in Salt Lake City if you believe you have an abscess tooth. In the meantime, it may help to rinse with warm salt water to help relieve pain and swelling.

Don’t ignore an abscess tooth!

Unfortunately, this oral condition is not one that will eventually go away on its own. If an abscess tooth is left untreated, it can persist for months – or even years – and can lead to serious health problems due to the infection’s potential to spread to other parts of the body. Among an increase in pain and other oral conditions, an abscess that isn’t taken care of can form an actual cyst in the jawbone, which may require tooth extraction or even surgery to completely remove.

If you’re unsure about whether or not you’re suffering from a tooth abscess, give our dental clinic a call and we’d be happy to help you identify the major indicators, as well as schedule an appointment to resolve the matter quickly and successfully!

bottom of page