700 N. Broad St Unit 2B & Unit 2C, Elizabeth, NJ 07208 – (908) 585-4990


How Can an Infected Tooth Impact Your Health?

man with tooth ache

When faced with an infected tooth, it’s crucial to understand the broader implications it can have on your overall health. An infected tooth is not just a localized issue; it can become a gateway for bacteria to enter the bloodstream, potentially leading to more serious health concerns. At Elizabeth Oral Surgery Group, we prioritize educating our patients on how an infected tooth can affect their overall well-being.

Understanding the risks associated with an infected tooth is the first step in taking control of your dental health. Our team is dedicated to guiding you through the journey of restoring not only your oral health but also safeguarding your general health.

Understanding the Risks of Tooth Infections

Tooth infections can pose a significant threat to your overall health. These infections occur when bacteria invade the dental pulp, the innermost part of the tooth containing nerves and blood vessels. The spread of this infection can lead to a range of complications, emphasizing the importance of timely and effective treatment.

The first concern with a tooth infection is its potential to spread. If left untreated, the bacteria can extend beyond the tooth to surrounding tissues, including the jawbone and facial muscles. This spread can lead to more severe conditions such as osteomyelitis (bone infection) or cellulitis (soft tissue infection), both of which require immediate medical attention.

Another critical aspect of tooth infections is their ability to affect systemic health. Bacteria from the infected site can enter the bloodstream, leading to a condition known as bacteremia. While the body’s immune system often manages these bacteria, in some cases, they can travel to other parts of the body, potentially causing infections in the heart (endocarditis), lungs, or even the brain.

Lastly, chronic tooth infections can significantly impact one’s quality of life. The persistent pain and discomfort associated with these infections can lead to difficulties in eating, speaking, and performing daily activities. Moreover, the constant presence of infection can take a toll on the body’s immune system, making it more challenging to fight off other illnesses.

The Systemic Impact of Oral Infections

The relationship between oral health and overall health is intricate and significant. One of the most notable connections is between oral infections and cardiovascular health. In fact, the inflammation caused by gum disease can contribute to the development of heart disease. The bacteria responsible for gum disease can also enter the bloodstream, leading to the thickening of the arteries and increasing the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

Another area of concern is the potential link between oral infections and diabetes. For individuals with diabetes, gum disease can be more severe and harder to control. Conversely, severe gum disease may potentially affect blood glucose control and contribute to the progression of diabetes. This bidirectional relationship makes it vital for individuals with diabetes to pay particular attention to their oral health.

Lastly, emerging research indicates a possible association between chronic oral infections and respiratory diseases. Bacteria from the mouth can be inhaled into the lungs, potentially leading to respiratory infections like pneumonia, especially in older adults or those with weakened immune systems.

Elizabeth Oral Surgery Group: Your Partner in Oral Health

At Elizabeth Oral Surgery Group, we understand the complexities of oral health and its impact on your overall well-being. Our experienced team, led by Dr. Nancy Herbst, is committed to providing you with the highest quality care, from diagnosis to treatment and beyond. Choosing us means opting for a practice that values your health and comfort. We employ state-of-the-art technology and personalized care to ensure your experience with us is not just about treating the immediate problem, but also about empowering you to take control of your oral health.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of a tooth infection or have concerns about your oral health, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Our team is ready to provide you with expert care and guidance. For more information or to schedule a consultation, call us at (908) 663-5309 or fill out our contact form.