Dentist: Why you should avoid cold drinks, hard toothbrush

Dentist: Why you should avoid cold drinks, hard toothbrush
Care of the teeth

A dentist, Dr Abubakar Sadiq, has advised residents to avoid cold drinks and use of hard toothbrush to avoid dental abscess.

Sadiq gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, on Friday in Kaduna.

Dental abscess or tooth abscess is a buildup of pus that forms inside the teeth or gums.

The abscess typically comes from a bacterial infection, often one that has accumulated in the soft pulp of the tooth.

The dentist added that bacteria exist in plaque, a by-product of food, saliva, and bacteria in the mouth, which sticks to the teeth and damages them and the gums.

“If the plaque is not removed by regular and proper brushing and flossing, the bacteria may spread inside the soft tissue of the tooth or gums and can  result in an abscess,” he said.

He listed the three types of dental abscess to include gingival, periodontal and periapical.

Sadiq said  symptoms of dental abscess  include pain in the affected area when biting or when touching the affected area, sensitivity to cold or hot food and liquids and foul taste in the mouth.

Others include fever, a general unwell feeling, difficulties opening the mouth, swallowing difficulties and insomnia.

“The main symptom of a dental abscess is pain. This may be a throbbing pain and is often intense.

“The pain usually starts suddenly and becomes more intense over the following hours or days. In some cases, the pain may radiate to the ear, jawbone, and neck,” he said.

He urged residents to keep oral hygiene by brushing twice a day with a soft brush and fluoride toothpaste.

“Clean in between your teeth everyday using floss or interdental brushes. Replace your toothbrush every three months and have regular dental checkups so problems can be spotted early.

“Any person with symptoms linked to a dental abscess should see a dentist immediately. Dental abscesses are easily diagnosed by a qualified dentist.

“People who have swallowing and breathing problems should go straight to the emergency department of their local hospital.

“A doctor cannot treat an abscess, but they may prescribe medication and advice on self-care and pain management and are also likely to know the fastest way of getting emergency treatment if required.”

He cautioned residents on smoking and avoidance of mouthwash after brushing one’s teeth.