Donna S. Bautista, DDS
Dr. Donna S. Bautista, DDS, completed her undergraduate studies at the University of California, San Diego with a bachelor of arts in biochemistry and cell biology. During her time at UC San Diego, she was involved in basic research including studying processes related to DNA transcription in the field of molecular biology. Upon graduation, she went on to attend dental school at the University of California, San Francisco. In addition to her formal dental training, she provided dental care for underserved communities in the Bay Area through clinics and health fairs. She also worked toward mentoring high school students interested in the field of dentistry.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- Slideshow: Top Problems in Your Mouth
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- Dental (Oral) Health Quiz
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Are home remedies effective for pericoronitis?
Sometimes, mild symptoms of pericoronitis can be treated at home through meticulous oral hygiene without the use of antibiotics. Thorough and gentle brushing of the area with a small-headed toothbrush may help to break up the plaque or food that is trapped. Oral water irrigators can be effective in clearing out the debris trapped under the operculum, as well. Rinsing with warm saltwater can help to soothe the area. Additionally, diluted hydrogen peroxide can be used as a rinse or irrigating solution to help reduce the bacteria in the area.
For severe pericoronitis where swelling and fever are present, home treatments are not advised and proper care should be sought with the appropriate health care professional.
What is the prognosis for pericoronitis?
The prognosis for pericoronitis is usually very good. With timely care and treatment, pericoronitis can properly be managed or eliminated. Symptoms of pericoronitis can last for days to weeks depending on the severity. The condition should resolve in approximately one to two weeks with treatment. If the initial cause of the infection is not treated, the condition will likely return.
Complications can occur with pericoronitis. Although rare, the infection can spread from the mouth into the head and neck and cause a serious complication called "Ludwig's angina." This can be a life-threatening condition where the airway could be blocked. Another life-threatening concern is the spread of the infection to the bloodstream (sepsis). Symptoms are be addressed as soon as possible to avoid any possible complications.
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