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Antiobiotics for a Tooth Infection?

Posted by ijaz

I had a tooth infection. My dentist gave me an antibiotic for it. Keflex. It worked for a while but now my tooth hurts again. My cheek is swollen and I’m in a lot of pain. Do you think he gave me the wrong antibiotic? Is one better than another?


Dear Ben,

Man in pain grabbing his jaw; Tooth Infection

I am hoping I am misunderstanding something here and there is more information you left out of your question. If you have a tooth infection, antibiotics alone will not eliminate the infection. The infected pulp has to be physically removed by the dentist. This is typically done by a root canal treatment if your tooth is able to be saved or by a tooth extraction if it cannot be saved.

Generally, what your dentist would use the antibiotic for is to hold the infection at bay until your actual treatment appointment. What’s happened to you is you were given the antibiotic but it seems no one followed up with you about the root canal treatment. Once your antibiotic finished, the infection flared back up. This needs to be treated right away. I would call your dentist in order to schedule an emergency appointment.

If your dentist did think that antibiotics alone were enough, then I am going to suggest you get a dentist who understands their profession a little better. Don’t put off the treatment. The longer this is left the more it will spread.

This blog is brought to you by North Haven Dentist Dr. Asma Ijaz.