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Seven Types of Common Mouth Infections

Mouth infections are the worst. They often lead to unbearable toothaches that leave you unable to get any sleep at night and unfocused during the day. It does not stop there, though. A mouth infection can spread to other areas of your body if it enters your bloodstream, including vital organs like the brain and liver.

Understanding mouth infections

Mouth infections are usually the result of tooth decay making its way into the pulp chamber of a tooth. Once this occurs, the pulp and the nerves inside become exposed to bacteria, food particles and other debris in the mouth. This usually ends up causing an infection.

Let us take a look at seven common types of mouth infections:

1. Dental cavities

Also known as caries, cavities are typically the result of tooth decay. According to research conducted at A.T. Still University, it is the leading cause of tooth loss for children under the age of 12. Dental caries are caused by bacteria called Streptococcus mutans.

2. Gingivitis

Gingivitis can be caused by different species of bacteria and is the earliest stage of gum disease. When bacteria gets into the crevices of a person's gums, toxins that irritate the surrounding gum tissue are created. This leads to inflammation. Once the gums become inflamed, it often leads to bleeding when brushing teeth. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, about 50 to 90 percent of adults in the U.S. have gingivitis. The infection can still be reversed at this point, but it will lead to periodontal disease if left unchecked.

3. Periodontal disease

With periodontal disease, pockets of pus begin to form underneath the gum line, leading to more inflammation and bone tissue loss. This eventually leads to teeth becoming loose and eventually falling out. It is actually the most common reason for tooth loss in adults.

4. Hand, foot and mouth disease

Children under the age of 12 are most likely to develop this disease. It is caused by the virus known as Coxsackie A16. It usually starts with a sore throat and fever, and then moderately painful blisters begin to develop on the tongue and cheeks. This infection typically lasts no more than a few days.

5. Herpangina

This disease is related to hand, foot, and mouth disease. It affects mostly children under the age of 10 during the summer and fall months. Sore throat, difficulty swallowing and feeling feverish are common symptoms of this infection. It is often accompanied by blisters that develop in the back of the child's mouth. Herpangina normally lasts for about three to five days.

6. Thrush

An overgrowth of Candida Albicans fungus leads to this infection. It is most common in people diagnosed with HIV.

7. Canker sores

These are lesions in the mouth and gum tissue. It is more common in teenagers and children and can take a few weeks for the sores to heal.

by Roy Dental

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