Cavities and Tooth Decay
Tooth Decay Leads to Cavities
Tooth decay affects billions of people worldwide and is one of the most common health issues seen in modern healthcare. Cavities are permanent damage to the tissue of a tooth and are the direct result of untreated tooth decay. A dental cavity can form along any surface of the tooth where plaque is able to attach. Tooth decay can affect anyone, but it is more common to see in individuals who: don’t visit the dentist regularly, consume a lot of sugary foods, or have bad oral hygiene habits.
With the proper care for your oral hygiene, tooth decay and cavities are avoidable, common dental problems. Other than visiting the dentist, maintaining a clean oral hygiene is the best defense against tooth decay. Good oral hygiene habits can include activities such as:
- Brushing your teeth at least twice a day.
- Utilizing fluoride based toothpaste to strengthen the enamel layer of teeth.
- Limiting the consumption of sugary foods. Sugar can stimulate the production of enamel decaying acid from any plaque on your teeth.
- Visiting your dentist regularly for X-Rays and routine cleanings that can discover cavities hidden between your teeth.
- Stained teeth discoloration. Any surface of a tooth that is abnormally black, white, or brown could be a sign of a cavity in a tooth.
Although it is more common among children, individuals of all ages can experience tooth decay that can cause cavities and serious damage to your teeth. In older individuals, the gums can recede to a point where the more vulnerable root of the tooth can be exposed, plaque can attach, and a cavity may form. Older dental fillings can also be a prime place for bacteria to slip inside the cracks of a tooth and form a cavity.Request an Appointment
Large Cavities or Dental Caries
If cavities or dental caries form in a tooth and are allowed to grow the point of reaching the tooth’s pulpy nerve, it can be extremely painful and requires immediate treatment to relieve the pain. Dental caries that are early in their development may not be painful at all, making them harder to discover without a dental examination or X-ray, but the tooth may be more sensitive to hot or cold food. The typical treatment for a severe cavity is a root canal or extraction of the affected tooth if the decay is too widespread to save the tooth. Visiting your dentist often and maintaining a rigorous dental hygiene routine are the best defense against the formation of large cavities. Schedule an appointment for a dental cleaning or examination today at Carson & Carson, DDS.
Symptoms of a Cavity
The symptoms can vary for each cavity depending on the location along a tooth and the severity of tooth decay. A cavity can be a blatantly large hole in your tooth that is accompanied by intense pain, or an discreet hole hidden in between the spaces of your teeth that is pain free. Most individuals experience the symptoms of a cavity when it has reached a sufficient size within the tooth. These symptoms can include:
- Mild or Severe toothache that does not subside and does not have an apparent cause such as a dental infection or impact to your teeth.
- Sensitivity or pain in a tooth when exposed to hot, cold, or sweet food or water.
- Visible holes or pits can be seen in teeth.
If you’re experiencing the uncomfortable toothache pain from a cavity, then call us to get immediate treatment (805)-983-0717. Carson & Carson, DDS is available 24 hours a day for emergency dental treatment in Oxnard, California.
Treatment of Cavities & Tooth Decay
In most cases, the removal of a cavity can be easily done by an experienced dentist. The type treatment used for the cavity depends on how severe the level of tooth decay is, but it can range from simple fillings to crowns, or even require root canal treatment. If you are suffering from toothache pain, and you need emergency dental treatment for a non-life threatening dental injury, call us immediately at (805)-983-0717. Administering of a local anesthetic is commonly used before the treatment of treat tooth decay, but we also offer sleep sedation dentistry through IV or IM Sedation, so you can sleep right through your dental treatment at Carson & Carson, DDS.
Fillings are used in minor cases of tooth decay where a small cavity has formed. The decayed portion of the tooth is first removed with a drill, and then the cavity can be filled in with a porcelain or composite resin filling that matches your tooth color. Different dentists use different types of filling materials, the most common types are: porcelain, composite resin, gold, silver alloy, or amalgam fillings which are mercury based. All of these types of filling materials have been deemed as safe for use and are approved by the American Dental Association.
Importance of Regular Dental Checkups
Although there are many symptoms of having a cavity, these symptoms may not always show, and it may not always be possible to know that a cavity is forming without the professional help of a dentist. Without routine visits to your local dental office, a cavity can grow to the point where a root canal or removal of the tooth may be necessary. Untreated tooth decay can lead to discomfort, pain, and a hefty cost for what is otherwise a preventable issue.
Don’t allow your teeth to decay! At Carson & Carson, DDS, our dentists have over 45 years of experience providing excellent quality dental care in Oxnard, and we can help you identify your teeth that may be vulnerable to tooth decay and the formation of cavities. Protect the investment of your bright smile and call for an appointment today (805)-983-0717.Schedule a Dental Visit