How Long Until a Tooth Infection Kills You (4 Risk Factors)

How Long Until a Tooth Infection Kills You?

An untreated tooth infection seems like a minor inconvenience, but in reality, it is a life-threatening condition. A minor infection can be life-threatening if it travels to other body parts. You might wonder how long it takes until a tooth infection kills you.

Well, we will answer this question later in this blog. So, continue reading to learn more about the potential for tooth infection and how infection spreads from the tooth to the other parts of the body. 

Palm Valley Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics offers amazing pediatric dental treatment and other services. From infants to adults, they have professionals for each age group to help them bring their bright smiles back into a friendly environment. 

Contact PVPD today and get your first pediatric dental visit for free.. Moreover, consult our professionals about your dental issues and get expert advice.

Can a Tooth Abscess Kill You?

Can a Tooth Abscess Kill You

A tooth infection results when oral bacteria enter the core of soft tissues, known as pus. It is also commonly observed at the time of tooth decay. It’s a medical condition in which a bacteria starts its growth due to chipped or damaged teeth. 

With enough surface area and favorable factors, bacteria grows and spreads to the nearby teeth, tissues, and roots. 

If the infected teeth are treated in time, it can lead to healthy teeth and gums, but when they remain untreated, they worsen.

Along with the gradual spread of infection to other body parts, it causes a situation where the body’s immunity collapses and doesn’t keep up with the infection anymore. 

When Does a Tooth Infection Become Life-Threatening?

A tooth infection can occur after dental surgery, but your dentist’s antibiotics are compelling enough to keep it underneath. Untreated tooth infections lead to complications such as:

  • Sepsis: A severe reaction in which the body responds to an infection. The signs of sepsis from a tooth infection include high fever, dizziness, shortness of breath, and digestive issues. 
  • Necrotizing fasciitis: It is a condition in which a severe infection leads to inflammation of the soft body tissues and causes death in the human body.  
  • Ludwig’s angina: A severe condition where the bacterial infection affects the floor of the mouth, underneath the tongue, and side tissues. 
  • Blood clots: A tooth infection can develop blood clots, particularly in the sinuses. As these clots are near the brain, they can result in severe complications. 
  • Mediastinitis: A severe medical condition where inflammation occurs between the lungs and can lead to death.
  • Osteomyelitis: The development and spreading of bone infection poses a life-threatening condition. 

Additionally, endocarditis, cavernous sinus thrombosis, and brain abscess are other complications that are severe in case an infection spreads and needs immediate professional help. 

4 Risk Factors Associated with Tooth Infection

Remember that some patients are more prone to develop these complications than others. Some major risk factors associated with the spread of infections such as:

1: Older age

Adults of a higher age are at a higher risk of developing tooth infections that lead to severe conditions. It is more common for aged ones to experience severe medical complications than all other age groups. 

2: Immunity

Due to low immunity, immunocompromised patients must fight the infections longer. Their body response to the infections is slow. 

3: Diabetes

Individuals with diabetes are at a higher risk for health complications due to the impaired body’s metabolism and lack of insulin. 

4: Malnourishment

If you are suffering from a chronic disease or had one in the past, there are higher chances that your body is malnourished. In such a case, getting a dental infection makes it harder for the body to fight against it.

How Long Tooth Abscess to Develop?

A close-up image of a tooth with an abscess

According to studies, tooth abscess develops over several months. It is a slow process that takes a while for the bacteria to reach the soft tissues and damage the pulp. 

Moreover, for a tooth, does abscess last lantibiotics? It lasts one to three days as antibiotics kill the bacteria and leave you with a healthy smile. 

Surprisingly, many individuals with solid immunity take it for months to years and live without further complications. But, being asymptomatic at times, the infection can kill you if left untreated. 

Furthermore, the time a tooth abscess takes to develop also depends on the stage of tooth infection. A dentist can easily understand at what stage your infection is and what treatment is needed. 

How Do You Know If a Tooth Infection Has Spread to Your Blood?

Sepsis is a medical condition where infection spreads to the bloodstream. The risk of sepsis from tooth infection at early stages is relatively low.

It is a life-threatening condition where bacteria move to other organs and body systems, resulting in severe complications.

Signs and symptoms of your infection are spread to your blood, such as a tooth infection, fa, fever, soreness, and high fever. With such signs, you need medical attention to understand what’s happening with your body and how to overcome it quickly. 

The Bottom Line:

A superficial tooth infection after a dental treatment or surgery can pose serious complications to the death.

It doesn’t take long for the infection from the tooth to spread to other body parts and the bloodstream. One must consult a reliable dentist and seek immediate medical help if signs appear. 


How do you know if a tooth infection is killing you?

Sepsis is when infection travels to the bloodstream and causes signs such as high fever, rapid breathing, high heart rate, and loss of consciousness. 

Can the human body fight off a tooth infection?

A tooth infection requires proper treatment to go away. Although our body can fight infections, more prolonged infections need longer treatments. 

How long does a tooth infection take to spread to your brain?

Dental abscesses take weeks to months to spread to the other body parts, including the brain. If left untreated, it spreads to the brain in a few weeks. 

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