A dental abscess, or tooth abscess, is an accumulation of pus that forms inside the teeth or gums.
The abscess typically originates from a bacterial infection, often one that has accumulated in the soft pulp of the tooth.
Bacteria exist in plaque, a by-product of food, saliva and bacteria in the mouth which sticks to the teeth and damages them, as well as the gums.
If the plaque is not removed by regular and proper tooth brushing and flossing the bacteria may spread within the soft tissue inside the tooth or gums, eventually resulting in an abscess.
► See also: ORAL SURGERY : How to treat a dental fistula
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