What are the treatment options for a bacterial oral infection?

Carol Jahn

The treatment options for a bacterial oral infection differ depending upon the severity of the situation. If the infection is caught early - gingivitis - a thorough cleaning may help resolve the problem. If the infection has progressed to periodontitis then the first step is often a deep cleaning called scaling and root plan followed by a re-evaluation a few weeks later to assess the healing and future treatment needs. In either case, professional care must be augmented by good daily home care for the best results otherwise the condition is likely to return. In addition to tooth brushing, interdental cleaning is critical. There are many products that can accomplish this - including string floss, interdental brushes, wood or plastic toothpicks, and a water flosser. String floss requires a high level of competency for effectiveness so for many people, other products are a better choice. Of these products, the water flosser has been shown to reduce the type of bacteria associated with oral infections (gingivitis, periodontitis).

Treatment options vary depending on the cause of the bacterial oral infection. For example, strep throat (one cause of bacterial oral infection) needs to be treated with antibiotics. Periodontis (another cause of bacterial oral infection) has multiple treatment options. These include scaling and root planing (a dentist scrapes away plaque and bacteria from the teeth and tooth roots, and smooths the surfaces of the roots to prevent tartar buildup), antibiotics, or oral surgery.

Continue Learning about Bacterial Infections

Bacterial Infections

Bacterial Infections

Bacterial infections like typhoid, strep throat and some sexually transmitted diseases are infections caused by different types of bacteria. These infections are often treated with doctor-prescribed antibiotics. Either viruses or ...

bacteria can cause infections, so it’s important to get examined by a doctor to make sure you’re prescribed the correct medication.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.