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A dental abscess is an infection of the mouth, face, jaw, or throat that starts as a tooth infection or a cavity. Bacteria from a cavity can extend into the gums, the cheek, the throat, beneath the tongue, or even into the jaw or facial bones. Pus collects at the site of the infection and will become progressively more painful until it either ruptures and drains on its own or is drained surgically.

Symptoms of a dental abscess typically include pain, swelling, and redness of the mouth and face. If the infection is severe, you can suffer nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, and diarrhea. If you think you have an abscess, call your dentist. If you cannot reach a dentist, go to a hospital’s Emergency department for evaluation, especially if you feel sick.

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