Although it is quite often experienced, not many people really understand the causes of this one gum disorder. In fact, the treatment for festering gums can be different for each person depending on the initial cause.
The cause of the gums to fester
The common cause of festering gums is when a person has a bacterial infection. When you have an infection, bacteria in the oral cavity will continue to grow and result in a buildup of fluid, or what is commonly called pus.
Over time, this buildup will make your gums look swollen. This condition is called an abscess. When the gums can no longer hold the pus, the abscess can burst. Pus can also leak out, through the gums and teeth.
Here are some conditions that can cause a buildup of bacteria that causes festering gums.
1. Poor oral and dental hygiene
If you do not maintain proper oral and dental hygiene, plaque buildup will occur. Plaque on the teeth that is left unchecked will eventually harden and become tartar.
Tartar can cause inflammation in the gums and other supporting tissues of the teeth, which is known as periodontitis. If not treated immediately, periodontitis can cause a gum infection called a periodontal abscess.
Cavities are ideal entry points for bacteria. Bacteria can enter the teeth, then go to the end of the roots. If a cavity is not treated immediately, the buildup of bacteria in it will trigger the formation of a tooth abscess at the end of the root, and cause the gums to fester.
3. Wisdom teeth grow sideways
Wisdom teeth that grow sideways can indeed be the source of the problem. Besides being able to trigger toothache, this condition can also trigger the gums to fester. The reason is, when wisdom teeth grow sideways, the open gums can become an entrance for bacteria.
These bacteria can cause you to develop an infection called pericoronitis. That is why, when wisdom teeth grow sideways, you can feel swollen gums, fever, and even festering gums.
4. Weak immune system
Some people can experience a weakened immune system due to treatment procedures such as chemotherapy, use of steroid drugs, and certain diseases, such as diabetes. This makes the body more susceptible to bacterial attack, including bacteria that cause festering gums.
Symptoms accompanying purulent gums
Many other dental diseases can progress to be severe, without any particular symptoms. However, this does not apply to purulent gums. The appearance of purulent gums is generally accompanied by other symptoms such as severe pain, redness in the gums, and swelling.
Other symptoms that can be recognized include:
- Sensitivity to cold and hot stimuli from food or drink
- Pain when chewing
- Difficulty swallowing food
- Swelling on the cheeks
- In some cases, there are loose teeth
- There is a bad taste in the mouth due to the pus seeping out
How to deal with suppurating gums
One way to deal with suppurating gums is to do root canal treatment
Only a dentist can treat gums with pus. Therefore, you are not advised to treat festering gum conditions at home. Unlike when you have other bacterial infections that can rely on the body's defense system to fight the cause of the disease, treatment such as taking pain relievers and warm compresses will only temporarily relieve this condition.
Some of the ways that the dentist will deal with suppurating gums are through:
• Root canal treatment
If the festering gums are caused by a large cavity, then the treatment that can be done to treat this condition is root canal treatment.
Root canal treatment is a root canal cleaning procedure to remove tooth nerves that have died due to bacteria. In this treatment, the root canal will then be filled with a special material that can help remove bacteria, so that the abscess can deflate.
• Gum curettage
If the gum festering is caused by periodontitis, the doctor may perform a gum curettage procedure. But before that, the doctor will suck the pus from the swollen gums. After that, with a special gum curette, the doctor will remove the damaged gum tissue due to infection.
The doctor will also clean the tartar (tooth scaling) until the dirt that sticks from the crown to some of the roots of the teeth is gone.
• Minor surgery
If the abscess in the oral cavity is large enough, the doctor can perform surgery by making a small incision in the swollen gum as a way out of the pus. Prior to this procedure, the doctor will give you a local anesthetic so that the area around the gums that is swollen and suppurating can be immune.
• Administration of antibiotics
Antibiotics are provided as a companion treatment, in order to accelerate the healing of suppurating gums. In addition, giving this drug will also help relieve your condition which has an infection.
Apart from antibiotics, pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs can also be prescribed following other purulent gum treatment procedures to relieve pain and help treat swollen gums that are infected.
• Tooth extraction
In severe conditions, the doctor will remove the tooth which is the source of the bacterial infection. During the extraction process, pus will come out along with blood. The dentist will clean the area of the extraction with a special liquid so that no more bacteria are left.
What happens if the suppurating gums are not treated immediately?
If not treated promptly, festering gums can cause various complications. The infection that occurs can spread to the face and jaw. In fact, in severe conditions, the infection can spread to the neck area.
The most severe complication that may occur from suppurating gums is sepsis. Sepsis is a bacterial infection spread throughout the body and can cause disturbances in vital organs, thus threatening life. However, this condition is very rare.
How to prevent gum festering
brushing your teeth regularly can help prevent the gums from festering
Festering gums is a condition that is very likely to be prevented. To prevent gum festering, here are some steps you can take.
Brush your teeth regularly. Brush your teeth at least twice a day, after breakfast and before bed.
Floss your teeth. Dental floss or dental floss will help clean between teeth that are not reached by the brush.
Eat healthy foods. Reduce consumption of sweet and sticky foods because they can increase the risk of cavities.
Check your teeth regularly. Go to the dentist at least every six months so that dental diseases can be detected and treated immediately, before they become severe.
When the festering gums have started to occur, it is a sign that the damage to the teeth or other areas in your oral cavity has been severe enough. Immediately check the condition of the festering gums before dangerous complications occur in the teeth and gums and other areas of the oral cavity.