Abscessed Tooth (cont.)

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What are the complications of an abscessed tooth?

If the abscess goes untreated, the infection can progress to a cellulitis which can be a serious and produce a life-threatening medical condition such as Ludwig's angina. Signs of a cellulitis or severe infection can include a fever, general malaise, and swollen lymph nodes in the neck or a draining sinus tract. If the abscess causes difficulty swallowing or problems breathing, immediate medical attention should be obtained. Bilateral swelling of the mandible, a condition known as Ludwig's angina, is a serious condition requiring hospitalization and IV antibiotics.

How is an abscessed tooth prevented?

The best way to prevent an abscessed tooth is to ensure regular examinations by a dentist to monitor and address any cavities present in the mouth. Some dentists recommend that radiographs should be taken at least twice a year to monitor the health of the maxillary and manibular jaw bones.


Gould, Jane M., et al. "Dental Abscess." Medscape. 30 May 2012.

Last Editorial Review: 9/13/2012

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