What Are the Symptoms of Tooth Infection?

Tooth pain is one of the most uncomfortable, disruptive, and destructive sensations many of us will experience. While any form of pain can be distracting and upsetting, pain from a tooth infection has an unfortunate tendency to make many other activities a lot more difficult. That includes talking, sleeping, and eating. What’s more is that due to the large nerves attached to the teeth, it can be especially severe.

What Are the Symptoms of Tooth Infection?

There are many different causes of tooth pain, but one of the most serious is infection. A tooth infection occurs when bacteria enters the area. The body will then fight to drive out the invaders, which will in turn cause swelling, redness, and a host of other unpleasant symptoms.

Fortunately, many cases of tooth infection are highly treatable using antibiotics. The only challenge is ensuring that you identify the possible infection early, before it is allowed to spread. In this post, we’ll look at some of the most common tooth infection symptoms, to help you do just that.

Common Tooth Infection Symptoms


As mentioned, the symptoms associated with a tooth infection are actually caused largely by the body’s own immune response. This is your system attempting to drive out the invading bacteria, which in turn leads to a host of unwanted side effects. One of these is inflammation: the infected area will swell as the body sends more blood and nutrients there, along with antibodies. This can become quite uncomfortable and may make it difficult to talk or to place pressure on the area. It can also lead to a visible lump on the side of the face.

Applying a cool compress to the area may help to reduce swelling by causing vasoconstriction (narrowing the blood vessels), but some swelling can actually be a good thing as it allows the body to accelerate healing.


Redness is the result of increased blood flow to the affected area. It can be difficult to see this as it is in the mouth, but you may notice it around the gyms, or even outside on the cheek.


One of the key ways to tell apart an infection from other causes of tooth pain is the presence of fever. Fever affects the whole body by increasing your temperature. This is intended to create a less hospitable environment for any bacteria, and to thereby drive it out of the system.
Fever itself is not a problem, but it can be dangerous if it exceeds 103F in adults. It’s important to keep drinking water in order to prevent dehydration too. This fever might also be accompanied with feelings of lethargy, muscle soreness/stiffness, weakness, and general malaise.


Of course, the most notable symptom of a tooth infection is pain. This is caused due to the infection affecting the nerves. This will be a severe and sharp pain, which can also radiate outward as a dull ache. It is likely to worsen when chewing or placing any pressure on the area (which is what makes sleeping so difficult.)

Regency Family Dentistry Omaha | Best Omaha Dentist near Westroads Mall in Regency

Whether your teeth needs are a:

  • complete exam and cleaning,
  • full-mouth restoration
  • or anything in between

We promise to provide you with exceptional care as we enhance the natural beauty of your smile.  Below are just some of the many procedures and dental services we regularly provide to our patients – with a gentle touch, and stunning results.  Your smile is our first priority, and we’ll give you something to smile about.

Preventative Dentistry

  • Dental Exams
  • Dental Cleanings
  • Oral Cancer Exam
  • Fluoride Treatment
  • Sealants
  • Dental X-Rays
  • Home Care
  • Nightguards & Mouthguards

Cosmetic Dentistry

  • Dental Implants
  • Composite Fillings
  • Porcelain Crowns
  • FixedPorcelain Bridges
  • Porcelain Veneers
  • Tooth Whitening

Periodontal Disease

  • What is Periodontal (Gum) Disease?
  • Diagnosis
  • Treatment
  • Maintenance

Restorative Dentistry

  • Dental Implants
  • Inlay Restorations
  • Onlay Restorations
  • Composite Fillings
  • Crowns
  • Dentures & Partial Dentures
  • Fixed Bridges
  • Root Canal Therapy

Oral Surgery

  • Wisdom Teeth Extractions

Have Any Questions?

Contact us today! We are happy to answer any questions you might have.

Dear Valued Patient

Happy 2024! All of us at Regency Dental hope your year is off to a great start. As many of you have already witnessed, there are changes occurring within our practice for the past several months. Dr. Spanel is in a time of transition within the practice, and he has found a colleague who shares his core values, philosophy, and sense of personalized quality care. He was fortunate to find Dr. Dan Ellingson who is a wonderful, gentle dentist. Dr. Ellingson is a local graduate of Gross High School, UNO, and UNMC College of Dentistry. He has a strong commitment to our local community. Having this opportunity to own a private practice, Dr. Ellingson is eager to meet each of you. He and all staff members will continue working diligently to provide you with the same caring, calm and meticulous dental care you would expect to receive from Dr. Spanel.

As we continue to move forward in 2024 with this transition, we thank you for your trust, partnership, and patience as we welcome Dr. Ellingson to the practice. We have additional team members, and have updated our software programs to comply with HIPAA regulations of paperless charting. We are also updating our equipment to provide state-of-the-art care.

We all know that changes bring challenges. Please know that Dr. Spanel, Dr. Ellingson and the team at Regency Dental intend to provide you, our loyal patients, the very best dental care in a warm and compassionate atmosphere. If you haven’t scheduled your 2024 dental check-ups, please call us!

We look forward to seeing you again soon!


The Doctors and Staff at Regency Dental.