Anberry Hospital

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How Long Until a Tooth Infection Kills You?

Do you know that during the 1600’s in London, tooth infection was the 5th or 6th leading cause of death? Are you here to know how long a tooth infection takes to kill you? Do you also want to know how it can kill you?

There is no simple answer for the time a tooth infection takes to kill you because it depends on several factors. These factors may include the type of your infection, its severity,your immune system response, etc. But usually, this risk increases when the infection spreads to other body parts from your tooth.

Reading this brief blog post will clear up all your doubts about tooth infection and the complications associated with it. Moreover, you will also learn about the treatments for this condition. Let’s unveil them quickly.

Can A Tooth Infection Kill You?

Yes, it’s possible to die from a tooth infection. In fact, it was a very common cause of death among diseases before the advancements in the medical field. Although the risk has now been reduced and it is very rare to get killed by a tooth infection, it’s still possible.

It especially happens when it’s not treated properly. Here are some of the complications that may arise in this situation and can even lead you to death.

  • Sepsis is the body’s extreme response to infection. It can cause severe inflammation and organ dysfunction.
  • Ludwig’s angina is the name of a serious bacterial infection. It causes swelling and inflammation in the floor of the mouth and neck.
  • Necrotizing fasciitis is a rapidly spreading bacterial infection that destroys skin, fat, and tissues.
  • Mediastinitis is an infection of the tissues in the mid-chest area.
  • Endocarditis: It means the inflammation of the inner lining of the heart chambers and valves.
  • Cavernous sinus thrombosis: It means blood clot formation in the cavernous sinus. It is a cavity located at the base of the brain.
  • Osteomyelitis: It is an infection of the bone.
  • Brain abscess: It means the collection of pus within the brain tissue. It is often due to a bacterial or fungal infection.

How Long Before A Tooth Infection Kills You?

There is no specific timeframe a tooth infection takes to kill you. It is because the time it takes for something to become life-threatening depends on several factors. These include your overall health, the severity of the infection, and its spread to vital structures like the brain or bloodstream.

It may take several days to weeks to reach this severity. However, if it is left untreated or not taken care of properly, this process may be quick. If not death, at least it can lead to serious health issues.

When Is Tooth Infection Life-Threatening?

Here is how to know that your tooth infection is life-threatening. These are the severe symptoms associated with this condition. It often becomes problematic after the generation of abscesses. If you notice any of the following conditions, then they’re serious, and you should seek immediate medical help.

  • Trouble speaking, chewing, or swallowing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Rapid heart rate
  • A persistent bad taste
  • Bad breath
  • Discoloration of the affected tooth
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Severe pain in the affected tooth
  • Red and swollen gums
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Fever
  • A general feeling of unwellness
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Swelling around your face, neck, or eyes
  • Inability to open your mouth or jaw (trismus)

Tooth Infection Treatment Options

There are multiple treatment options for tooth infections. Your doctor will decide the most suitable treatment option for you. Let’s take a look at these options.

  • Antibiotics: The first and most common prescription for infections is antibiotics. This works by killing bacteria. These are often prescribed for mild infections.
  • Drainage: The next treatment option we have is drainage. It is often done along with the use of antibiotics. An abscess is drained by incision to ease pain and prevent further spread of infection.
  • Root canal: Root canal is also recommended to treat tooth infection in the same cases. This procedure involves removing infected pulp, disinfecting the root canal, and sealing it to save the tooth.
  • Tooth extraction: The last option is to remove the infected tooth. It is often done in severe situations when there is no other option. It saves you from any severe complications.

Final Words

It can take several days to weeks for a tooth infection to kill you or become life-threatening. It often happens after the creation of an abscess and when the infection starts spreading to other areas of the body as well.

It is a very serious issue, and you must be very careful in the treatment of a tooth infection. Strictly follow your doctor’s prescription and advice while treating it. Moreover, maintain adequate dental care to prevent this situation in the first place.

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