I have a tooth infection but have no dental insurance or money. I cannot afford an extraction, so a root canal is out of the question. Yesterday when I woke up, my left cheek was noticeably swollen. I took ibuprofen, which helped, but I know I cannot live on ibuprofen. What can I do at home to get rid of the infection? Thank you. Anthony
Thank you for contacting Dr. Tostado’s office. Tooth infections are serious because they continue to spread without treatment.
Why See a Dentist for a Tooth Infection?
See a dentist for a tooth infection because at-home treatment will not be successful for these reasons:
- Infection location – The infection is inside the tooth. Even cannot remove the infection from the tooth pulp or tissue inside the tooth.
- Infection persistence – Without root canal treatment, the bacteria will become antibiotic resistant. A dentist will use a crown to protect the weakened tooth.
- Infection spreads – Your jawbone, other teeth, and bloodstream can get infected. As the condition spreads, it becomes more costly and time-consuming to control.
What If You Cannot Afford Root Canal Treatment?
Tooth removal is the next option if you cannot afford root canal treatment. Dentists prefer to save your natural teeth for these reasons:
- Other teeth begin to lose their position and drift when a tooth is missing
- Missing teeth can affect your speech and chewing efficiency.
- Misaligned teeth can cause TMJ concerns, including jaw pain, earaches, neck pain, and headaches.
A dental clinic
Many communities have free dental clinics for people without insurance who cannot afford care at a dental practice. Look online for a local dental society or university dental school, call them, and ask about programs for free dental care.
A dental office with payment plans
Many dental offices accept emergency appointments. Although they may not offer free care, the dental office may offer payment plans or financing so that you can pay for treatment over time. Ask about payment options before scheduling a visit.
Please do not continue to risk your oral and physical health. Seek help right away.