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foul smell in gum

Hi.I am aware that my wisdom tooth is being retained in the gum after I took an X ray, but after months, that area of my gum smells very bad whenever I push it with my finger or by chewing food on it. It also smells in the gap between the gum and the next tooth. I hate this and wanted to know if anyone has any suggestions to reduce this smell.

This discussion is related to foul smell along one area of gum.
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Avatar universal
Foul putrid smell odour when you touch one part of gum above tooth teeth.  Solved accidentally after years


I will go through all relevant details and history, as I suggest even I did not figure the solution and I had all the clues as it were. I solved it my accident.

So given your situation may vary I will tell the story step by step. With the solution listed below as "what I believe" if you want to skip to that! But I would recommend reading the lot. Incidentally if you are skipping below, I'm a volunteer animal rescuer and I threw in a paragraph or two about teeth issues in pets and then I offered some other key points to pet owners while I was at it! Naturally If not interested you can just ignore that as it's an add on AFTER after the odour solution. I can't stress enough how delighted I am to have that horrible smell issue resolved after all these years. I assumed it was not solvable.

Anyway, I had this problem for years and read this thread years ago and yesterday my problem was accidentally solved. However I only just discovered this an hour ago and my first thought was remembering this site and wanting to share the fix with you.

The putrid smell was above one tooth which had been capped with a filling and not in a great condition.This tooth was top mouth about 3 from back.I always just assumed the odour issue was as a result of this.

It has a slight swelling above it and (what I now know as a key point) when I press it, it feels like the bone is somewhat worn away and there a hole in the gum. Almost like a punched hole in a plaster wall.

Two days ago I begun to get an overnight sharp pain in a different tooth. The pain was in the very last back tooth, which is two teeth down from the tooth with the odour mentioned above.

Something small had just snapped off and slightly chipped this last back tooth and caused immediate pain when touched and I thought "dam" I expected merely just a small repair job a tiny pin head side minor filling.

My dentist is brilliant, he doesn't do unnecessary work and in one instance he didn't charge me.

He had a look at this last back tooth and immediately said this tooth will have to go!  
This shocked me as although the tooth was worn down, it seemed fine to me and in appearance and feeling and every other way looked and felt better than the tooth with the odour above it.

Just FYI - this is not the solution yet, but read for knowledge.
I was injected with pain killers to await extraction and during that time mentioned the odour and the dentist recommended I rinse with salty water. 1/3 cup to 1 tea spoon salt few times a day a minute at a time. He said it was basically an abscess.

Anyway the painkiller kicked in and he extracted the (emergency issue) back final tooth (reminding you - Not the one with the filling and the odour above it)

When extracted he showed me this tooth and indeed I seen a cavity in it. The cavity must have been there for a long time. However it was unnoticed by me as it had never presented any issues! However once extracted in the surgery, even from a few feet away, I could get a slight smell off it from the decay and cavity that had been happening. I again stress, this was the extracted back tooth and up until 2 days ago seemed fine to me, just just worn down and had presented no thoughts, no issues, no concerns till the overnight slight chipping and pain that caused that led to me booking an appointment next morning.

Once extracted I didn't touch that area for a full day and more.

Now, just one hour ago I did the finger touch to the usual place where the odour (usually) has been for years and .... IT'S GONE! The horrible smell has vanished.

So what I believe.
Remember - The years old issue tooth that needed a filling had created an abyss and this as stated created a decay / a hole in the gum. You wouldn't really realise the hole unless you really checked and compared.

Meanwhile, 2 teeth down from this, completely unknown to me, the back tooth was in a state of decay. The decay and smell of it being ONLY being obvious ONLY when the dentist extracted it.

I believe this smell was quite strong all the time over the years >BUT HAD NOT been presenting a smell on that tooth or at that part of the gum!

What had been happening was, the decay and smell was somewhat closer to the top of the (now extracted) tooth and had been piping it's way up into the gum and making it's way through the gum.

Then smell was then piping two teeth along the gum to the the other older first issue tooth where a hole is in the weaker gum.

Do check the odour gum yourself and see do you feel there is a difference when compared to the rest of the gum. Even if it is just somewhat like cracks or like a soggy piece of cardboard or paper, just enough to break the seal and let odours through!

I'm 100% convinced the place where the smell was / where I tipped my finger, was merely like a top of a long chimney, letting the fumes escape.

I had been fooled by the fact, I had an issue tooth right there which made me naturally assume that had been the problem.

However, to reiterate, the solution,
This odour spot merely was where the the weak cracks / hole in the gum was allowing the odour to escape from. The odour actually (unknown to me for years) was coming from a decaying tooth, two teeth down from there. Repeating again, there was no odour, no pain or no sense of decay in the actual tooth causing the odour.

So that smell had been going up from there (the unknown to me decaying tooth) down the gum and escaping through the weak spot two teeth further down.

I'm in shock the smell is gone and so happy!

I have literally typed this up on an iPad and am about to register an account just to post this solution.

Please tell your dentist about this chimney pipe effect. Hope it will help as the natural assumption is to assume the smell is from the point of source / a previous issue tooth!

Incidentally the dentist would really be unable to tell there was a decaying issue unless  you presented symptoms and he x rayed etc.

So if you have that smell, you need to suggest to the dentist that you believe in a tooth close by and probably further back in the mouth that's there is hidden decay cavity. Go for it being the last tooth in your head as apparently it's common enough for them to go.

I'm thrilled it's gone and I hope it helps you!

Good luck



On a tooth related issue.
I'm a volunteer animal rescuer.
Vets do not often check pets (or a feral or semi feral cats you might have in being neutered etc) or a wildlife rescue for issues re teeth. Sadly there are lots of animals around with mild to excruciating teeth pain that they just can't tell you about.

It's only when the teeth are removed you will see a considerable personality change in the animal and mood. Simply because the pain they are suffering is gone!

So always get the animals teeth checked when at the vets and especially when they are under anaesthetic for any issue and the vets can give a good teeth check then.
Helpful - 0
By George, i think u've done it! Thank u, thank u, thank u! I was also experiencing a foul, putrid odor from an extraction molar site from years ago. I naturally assumed the odor originate there. After reading ur post, it got me 2 thinking about the molar on the opposite side from where the odor was coming from. This molar has been aching for years, off & on! Since the pain was more a slight irritate, that actual pain, so i ignored it, as it already has a composite filling on it. I now am almost certain, that tooth is what is causing the foul smell, & 4 whatever reason, the extraction site is where it's escaping from. I have been on a roller coaster ride about this damn stench, & u have just given me a new lead!
NOT SOLVED - sorry

This was only temporarily solved for me as the smell came back after a few days. I now realise it was the antibiotics used during the extraction stopped the odour and I was very disappointed.

I could not find this original post to edit it.

I can’t understand  why the dentist won’t give a course of antibiotics.

Instead he recommended salt water blah blah.

The extraction meant it’s not as bad as it used to be though, so I would get it done.

If anyone ever finds a cure please let us know

I tried to edit my original post but it won’t allow.

Wow, by coincidence I just seen it’s exactly a year to the day and time that I replied to my original post
3060903 tn?1398565123
When i had the same  problem with when i had my wisdom teeth out, I started using a waterpic before and after a full cleaning.  I used both mouth wash and salt, alternatively in the water pic (as well as gargling with mouth wash, make sure you swish long enough for the mouthwash to lose it's sting and feel like you're just swishing with water). I also bought one of those dental pics (my dentist said it was okay), it's got a semi circle on the end of it and a really sharp end, and i very carefully scraped any remaining plague off the teeth at the gum line. I brought it just underneath the gum line. It helps the gums to stay healthy and able to attach closely to the clean teeth. Let us know how it goes? Good luck

There's an interesting article of home remedies that are used to help with bacteria (and the smell). at http://www.findhomeremedy.com/home-remedies-for-receding-gums/

Thanks for posting. Good luck. Please let us know how it works out for you?
Helpful - 0
15439126 tn?1444443163
Smell is bacteria decaying unremoved food residue.  This irritates the gum, enlarging the pocket and worsening the problem, along with slowly eroding the jawbone supporting the tooth.

Good gum hygiene should greatly help.  Do you floss regularly, once or twice daily?  Much better here I think, or use a WaterPik cleaning gadget (works better with warm saltwater)?

Have you received dental hygiene services twice a year?  They focus on keeping gums clear of plaque build-up which patients cannot remove themselves.
Helpful - 0
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