Symptoms of an abscessed tooth include pain, fever, tooth sensitivity to cold or hot foods or beverages, and foul-smelling breath, according to WebMD. Additional symptoms include a bitter taste in the mouth, swollen glands in the neck, swollen or red gums, and generalized discomfort.
An abscessed tooth may also cause the upper or lower jaw to swell, and an open, draining sore may develop on the inside of the gum on the affected side, notes WebMD. A continuous and severe toothache with throbbing, sharp or gnawing pain often indicates an abscess. If the infection caused by an abscessed tooth kills the tooth’s root, the pain caused by the abscess may stop, but the infection continues to grow and destroy tissue, so all abscesses require evaluation by a dentist.