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How Does Bacteria Cause an Infection in the Mouth? From Plaque to Abscess

Posted by: Dr. Sirakian     Categories: Uncategorized

Plaque to abscess

Serious dental infections all start simply enough, bacteria lands on some food stuck to a tooth and starts eating. As the bacteria replicate they start forming a biofilm, a layer of bacteria, that we know as dental plaque.

As the bacteria continue to feast, they start producing acid as a byproduct. This acid starts eroding the outer layer of the tooth – the enamel. But the erosion doesn’t stop there. Once they break through the enamel they make their way through the second level of the tooth – the dentin.

After eating their way through the two layers of the tooth, the bacteria finally reach the center – the pulp. In the pulp the bacteria and the toxins they produce create a condition called pulpitis. At this point, left untreated, the pulp would need to be removed in a root canal procedure in order to save the tooth.

If a root canal is not used in order to save the tooth, the tooth will eventually reach a state of necrosis, essentially meaning that the tooth is now dead and beyond saving. At this point if the tooth is not pulled, the site of the dead tooth can be a source of infection. The body’s immune system will react against the bacteria trying to stop the spread. The result of the body’s reaction is an abscess full of pus.

This journey is a messy affair, but with regular dental visits you should be able to stop the damage before the abscess forms.

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When some of us think of the dentist, we may feel anxious and frightened… so how do we conqueror such a fear? We need the dentist; they help make our smiles healthy and beautiful, so we can’t simply avoid them forever! Here is a look into dental anxiety, how it is caused, and how to […]

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3 Tricks Dentists Use To Put You At Ease

Dental visits can often induce stress and anxiety. However, your comfort is your dentist’s top priority! To help make the experience more pleasant, dentists often use a few tricks to help patients feel at ease in the dentist chair. 1. Talking when they have tools in your mouth Ever wondered why dentists will make conversation […]

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Coffee Stains Got You Down? Perk up

Sipping on a fresh cup of coffee to perk up in the morning is an activity cherished by many. The buzz of caffeine and the familiar taste of your favorite blend is a great way to start your day. However, consistent coffee intake can leave those pearly whites more than a little lackluster. If you […]

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Try On A Crown?

Crowns, fillings, caps, veneers—your dentist is always using terms for different ways to give you your perfect smile… but what do they all mean? In this blog, we’ll be focusing on crowns—what they are, what they’re made of, and most importantly, how they could benefit you! You’ll be “crowned” an expert in no time. What […]

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Stress Eating & Your Oral Health

While candy is a well-known culprit of tooth decay and cavities, it is also known as the downfall of many weight loss plans. When times get tough, we seem to always reach for the unhealthy treats, and it turns out that there is a scientific reason for us. A study done by scientists at the […]

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