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Dental Infection vs. Dental Sepsis - What Is the Difference?


Posted on 4/1/2024 by Weo Admin
Dental ChairAccording to research, our mouths are literally bacteria havens, hosting over 700 different types of microbes. While some bacteria are good for dental health, bad bacteria can cause big problems when they multiply unchecked. One potential problem is a localized infection in the mouth. In severe cases, a more serious condition called dental sepsis can develop.

Often, many people confuse localized dental infections with dental sepsis. While they admittedly sound similar, the two terms represent different stages and degrees of oral health conditions.

What Is Dental Infection?


A dental infection is typically a localized issue that develops in the mouth due to an overgrowth of harmful bacteria. The excess bacteria invade every part of the mouth, including the tooth pulp, gums, and even the bone that supports the teeth. The most common type of dental infection is tooth decay. This occurs when the bacteria in the mouth produce too much acid that erodes the enamel in the teeth.

Dental infections are typified by symptoms like tooth pain, increased teeth sensitivity, bad breath, and swollen or bleeding gums. In severe cases, there could be some pus around the affected teeth, and you may also experience fever.

What Is Dental Sepsis?


Dental sepsis is a more advanced and severe stage of infection. While a dental infection primarily affects the mouth, sepsis is a life-threatening condition that can affect the whole body.

Sepsis occurs when bacteria from untreated or poorly managed dental infections manage to enter the bloodstream. Its initial symptoms are similar to those of a dental infection but worsen very quickly. Distinct symptoms of dental sepsis include rapid breathing, increased heart rate, incessant chills, high fever, and severe pain. Sepsis is also characterized by low blood pressure, also called sepsis shock, and a general feeling of confusion and disorientation.

Dental infection is usually a moderate problem that can be treated with antibiotics. Sepsis, on its part, is extremely serious and often requires hospitalization. If you are experiencing any symptoms of dental infection or sepsis, it is best to see a dentist promptly before the issue escalates. Call us today to get a full diagnosis and timely treatment.





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Dental Blog • Menasha, WI • Mid Valley Dental, S.C.
Michael J. Wockenfus, DDS created a blog to educate the community. It is your resource for all dentistry questions. Learn and read topics in the blog here!
Mid Valley Dental, SC, 903 E. Airport Road, Menasha, WI 54952 / (920) 215-4160 / midvalleydental.com / 5/22/2024 / Tags: dentist Menasha WI /