Tooth inflammation is an inflammation of the teeth that arises from many causes. Affected patients rarely notice the silent problem at first.
How does a tooth (root) inflammation develop?
The inflammation of a tooth can have many causes. The reason for this is the anatomy: Every tooth comprises enamel, dentin, and tooth pulp. This marrow contains nerves and vessels, which in medicine are also referred to as the pulp. This nerve cavity can become diseased as bacteria usually migrate from the outside to the inside.
If a tooth has been infected with caries for too long, bacteria will continue to spread in the dentin. The dentin is connected to the medulla via small tubules, the nerve and vascular medulla (pulp) that can also become infected. Bacteria eventually descend along with the pulp to the root of the tooth: the roots become inflamed. This is also known as tooth root inflammation and must be treated by the dentist with a root canal treatment.
Besides tooth decay, other diseases lead to tooth inflammation or root inflammation:
- Leaky fillings
- Gaps and (micro) cracks in the tooth
- Diseases of the gums (periodontal disease)
- Untreated, loosened, or broken teeth
How do you recognize a tooth root inflammation?
A tooth inflammation is initially silent. Often the inflammation is only noticed as soon as the bacteria have multiplied and migrated to the root of the tooth. In the meantime, the teeth may be more sensitive than usual – cold or heat lead to unpleasant complaints.
As the caries germs spread, the symptoms increase. The tooth inflammation has reached the root tip, the bacteria continue to spread in the body and initially attack the surrounding tissue and the bones. The tooth root inflammation is usually recognized by sudden violent and stabbing pain. Cold or warm stimuli when eating and drinking are also extremely uncomfortable for the inflamed tooth. The pain in the tooth and gums then becomes unbearable.
If we do not treat the root canal inflammation, the disease will spread. As the root inflammation looks for a way to push the disease off, small ducts with pus formation are made. If the body cannot ease the disease through such passages, an abscess can form as a result. An abscess is a massive swelling of the gums and is also known as a “thick cheek”. Patients with swelling should urgently consult a dentist.
When should you go to the dentist with a tooth infection?
A root inflammation, which can turn into a root inflammation, must be treated by a dentist as soon as possible.
How is the treatment of a tooth root inflammation?
At first, pain medication can suppress symptoms, but when the effects are over, the pain returns. Besides, taking pain medication on a long-term basis is no solution: it leads to life-threatening organ damage to the liver or kidneys.
The practitioner decides how the tooth root inflammation is treated depending on the degree of the symptoms. If the tooth is too inflamed, the dentist first treats the tooth root inflammation with antibiotics. Antibiotics reduce the inflammation in the tissues and bones around the tooth root, which allows a less painful treatment of the highly acute tooth root inflammation. However, since the cause of the inflammation is not eliminated in this way, a root canal treatment is necessary.
Inflammation can only be permanently eliminated with a root canal treatment or removal of the diseased tooth – and only with a completed root canal treatment can a toothache be permanently avoided.
What soothes the root inflammation?
If a “big cheek” has formed, you need therapy immediately.
In the first step, the dentist splits the swelling with a minimal incision so that pus can drain away. A disinfectant rinse of the swelling of the gums follows. To ease the acute inflammation of the roots, the doctor opens the nerve and vascular marrow by drilling briefly. The pressure can then escape successfully, and the pain suddenly subsides. Then a drug with an active ingredient against the inflammation is inserted. A follow-up appointment to remove the active ingredient and to lay again is necessary the following day.
When does the tooth inflammation go away again?
Only with a completed root canal treatment or the removal of severely diseased teeth at the dentist does the pain permanently decrease.
What happens if we stop the treatment for my tooth root inflammation?
Teeth that are no longer supplied with blood vessels and nerves are weak points in the body. They can no longer withstand the usual chewing forces and break off in the long run. The remaining root remnants make it easier for bacteria to gain access to the jaw – this can cause a new flare-up.
Besides, the same germs from the mouth and delivery areas like to attack the heart and heart valves. Inflammation of the heart and the pericardium leads to permanent problems: the performance and the heart rate decrease, which makes artificial heart valves necessary.
To prevent the serious consequences of tooth inflammation and painful procedures, have regular dental check-ups and professional teeth cleaning for the benefit of your health.