Dental cyst – does it need to be removed? Causes, symptoms, treatment.

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A dental cyst is one of those diseases that can develop in the oral cavity unnoticed. However, this does not mean that it is harmless and can be ignored.

What is a dental cyst?

A dental cyst is a cavernous formation that infiltrates with content in the course of its development. Odontogenic cysts, which is another, slightly more precise name, develop in the bone space, carrying the risk of damage and weakening of the jawbone or mandible. Usually, these are lesions that build up slowly and remain asymptomatic for a long time, as the content of the cyst is uninfected. However, as the cyst grows, it may compress other structures.

Dental cyst symptoms

At an early stage, cysts usually develop unnoticed because they are not superficial lesions. However, the larger the dental cyst, the more symptoms it can cause. Often, these symptoms are nonspecific or difficult to interpret.

  • Pain located within the lesion itself, in its immediate vicinity, is very common when chewing.
  • Swelling in the mouth (painful or not).
  • With large cysts, facial symmetry may be disturbed.
  • Dislocations, loosening of teeth, and increased susceptibility to pathological fractures.
  • Changes in the tooth structure
  • The content of the tooth cyst leaks to the, in which case it is usually purulent.

The changes are visible on the X-ray and the dentist will be able to recognize them even at an early stage when they do not yet give symptoms perceptible to the patient. On this basis, decisions about further treatment can be made.

Causes of dental cysts

It is usually difficult to indicate the causes of the development of a dental cyst in a specific patient. It does not necessarily affect the type of treatment, but several factors can be indicated that increase the risk of developing such changes.

  • Ignoring prolonged inflammation in the periodontal tissues.
  • Neglect of hygiene procedures.
  • Incorrect root canal treatment.
  • Chronic diseases of the throat or nose, especially if their symptoms spread to tissues surrounding the teeth.

Usually, risk factors overlap. Inaccurate hygiene leads to the development of inflammation, patients do not do regular dental checkups after endodontic treatment, and so on.

What does a tooth cyst look like?

The tooth cyst may not be visible from the outside. However, it is located shallowly, it may take the form of smaller or larger nodules, protuberances, or reddened papules with purulent infiltrates. Some dental cysts may have a darker color, or they may ooze.

Types of dental cysts

Dental cysts are divided into several types. Classifying the lesion to one of them allows the dentist to determine the correct way to proceed or create a list of recommendations for a patient with a tendency to form a cyst.

  • Root cyst most often develops at the front teeth and is typically caused by hygienic negligence and chronic inflammation. It can also be connected to dental pulp necrosis and is by far the most common type of cyst.
  • The follicular cyst develops near the tooth buds and accompanies the pathological growth model of the periapical tissues of the tooth or its root.
  • Keratocyst is a type of neoplasm that occurs directly within the bone. This is a relatively rare type, treatment of which can be complicated.
  • A periodontal cyst is always a small lesion. Its development is connected with inflammation in the periodontal capsule.
  • The gingival cyst develops in the gum itself. It is the most common type occurring in young children, but it rarely requires treatment.

A specific type of cyst may develop if the patient has undergone improper endodontic treatment. The mechanism and extent of such changes are variable, and the treatment of dental cysts after root canal treatment may be difficult.

How is a dental cyst detected?

A dental cyst, even if visible from the outside, is diagnosed based on X-ray imaging. Only in the image, you can see its exact location, size, and shape. Many cysts are detected only on X-rays because they are not revealed externally.

Dental cyst – treatment methods

If a dental cyst is to be removed, it must be done surgically. In the case of small changes, they are sometimes not removed completely, but, e.g., only dried, to lead to the disappearance of inflammation. However, usually in such a situation, the cysts are removed.

Dental cyst – does it need to be removed?

Removal of the cyst is usually recommended. The exceptions here are gingival cysts in children, but every time it is the doctor who makes individual recommendations. No automatism would allow you to decide without a precise diagnosis, especially since it is recommended to treat the cyst in a way enabling to save the tooth.

If for some reason the patient is not eligible for the procedure at the moment, the condition can be controlled. The dentist cleans the affected area and makes appropriate recommendations, but it is only an ad hoc procedure.

What can result from failure to treat dental cysts?

Developing cysts of any type can cause pain and even far-reaching structural changes in the bone tissue of the mandible or jaw, even contributing to tooth loss.

If the cyst were to rupture and become infected, the result would be not only acute inflammation but also the risk of complicated systemic infections.

Failure to remove the cyst in the shortest recommended time may result in changes in soft tissue and bones, but it is also connected to the fact that the cyst may continue to develop, making subsequent removal complicated. It can even make it impossible to save your tooth.

Are there home remedies for a dental cyst?

It is impossible to remove a cyst with home remedies. If it is accompanied by severe pain, it can be temporarily relieved or even drying agents may be used on the changed area. However, it does not lead to the removal of the cyst and in the long run, it can also have serious negative effects.

Homemade methods have a serious disadvantage. They do not allow for histopathological examination. Whereas, it is the histopathological examination carried out on the affected periapical tissues that allows us to define the type of cyst and determine the best course of action.

What you can do at home is take care of thorough tooth brushing as well as use the X-ray and hygiene procedures offered in dental offices. In this case, although prevention does not solve the problem completely, taking care of your teeth can reduce the risk of the formation of cysts of virtually all types.