Certain factors can increase the risk of cavities, including:
The risk of developing cavities is highest in young children, teenagers, and older adults. As people get older, they often need medication that can cause dry mouth, teeth are more likely to be worn, and they are more likely to have gum recession. Certain teeth are also more at risk of cavities, including those right at the back called your molars and premolars. These teeth are designed for chewing food thoroughly and have fissures and grooves in the chewing surface that can be hard to keep clean with a toothbrush.
The symptoms of tooth decay vary according to the extent of the cavity and the location of the tooth. Initially, a small lesion cavity will cause few or no symptoms. As the cavity becomes larger, you might notice continuous toothache or pain that is only present when you bite down on the tooth. You could experience tooth sensitivity or pain whenever you eat anything hot or cold or sweet or sour. Sometimes it’s possible to see signs of tooth decay as visible pits or holes in teeth. The affected tooth may become discolored with white, brown, or black stains.
Truly magnificent work. 10/10 would recommend. I will definitely be coming back for more tooth decay treatment. Thank you so much.
Whenever you see our dentist Dr. Shoukry for a dental exam, he will gently check the condition of every single tooth and can easily detect any soft areas in a tooth or signs of lesions or cavities. We also take dental x-rays regularly as these can show tooth decay in areas normally hidden from view, such as the contact areas between your teeth. Our dentist will ask if you have been experiencing any symptoms or problems such as a toothache or sensitivity.
Treating tooth decay depends on the size of the cavity. When a cavity is just beginning, we may be able to reverse it using professional fluoride treatment that helps to remineralize or re-harden your tooth enamel. Small cavities can easily be treated with a dental filling, but a tooth that is more extensively decayed may require a crown. This custom-made restoration covers the tooth entirely, protecting and preserving it.
Suppose your tooth decay is causing severe toothache, where the infection has reached the dental pulp. In that case, we will almost certainly recommend a root canal treatment to eliminate the infection and save the tooth from extraction.
Unfortunately, we cannot always save severely decayed teeth, especially if they are badly infected. Sometimes the only option available may be extraction.
You cannot cure tooth decay without professional dental care. The sooner you see a dentist, the more likely we can save, protect and preserve the tooth.
Even though tooth decay is common, it is a preventable condition. Regular dental checkups and hygiene appointments combined with a good brushing and flossing routine can significantly protect against cavities.
When we see someone at a higher risk of developing cavities, we can discuss other preventive measures. For example, we might suggest using an antimicrobial mouth rinse to help eliminate more harmful bacteria or a fluoridated mouthwash. We may also suggest regular fluoride applications using professional-grade fluoridated products that are stronger and more effective than those available over-the-counter.
Another option is to use dental sealants applied to the chewing surfaces of premolars and molars, sealing these surfaces and preventing tooth decay. However, dental sealants can only be used to protect healthy teeth, so they are commonly applied soon after a child receives their adult teeth. Other preventive strategies include: