Cavities are common, and many people need at least one cavity filling during their lifetime. However, when people hear “cavities,” many patients often feel fearful about this standard procedure and put it off, which will only lead to more dental problems in the future. Continue reading to ease your mind about cavity fillings and to learn more about what to expect.
WHAT IS A CAVITY?
A cavity is a permanent damage to the hard surface of your teeth caused by bacteria and decay in crevices or holes. Anyone can get a cavity, but people who snack often and drink sugary beverages are at higher risk of developing one. Read our blog, Why Are Soft Drinks Bad for Your Teeth? to learn more.
If these damaged spots are not treated, they grow, becoming deeper and affecting other layers of the teeth. Over time this decay can result in severe toothaches, infection, and eventually loss of the tooth entirely.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF CAVITIES?
The symptoms of cavities vary. Some people experience pain, while others may not even know that they have a cavity until their dentist discovers it. Signs and symptoms of a possible cavity include:
- Dark spots on the tooth
- White spots on the tooth
- Sensitivity to sweets or cold food and drinks
- Mouth swelling
CAVITY FILLINGS AND OTHER TREATMENTS
If you visit the dentist regularly or start developing symptoms like a toothache or sensitivity, your dentist might treat you for a cavity. If treated early enough, you won’t need to go through extensive treatment, but the longer you wait, the more work the tooth will need.
The extent of treatment ranges from simple solutions like fluoride treatments and cavity fillings to more in-depth procedures like root canals or tooth extraction. Fluoride treatment can help rebuild enamel on a tooth and reverse the decay that has started if caught early enough, but the most common treatment is a filling.
Cavity fillings are a simple process that involves removing the decay and filling the area with a composite material to protect the weakened area. Other treatments include placing a crown on severely damaged teeth that are not damaged enough for a root canal or extraction.
At The Landing Dental Spa, you can expect to be attended to by our caring dental hygienists and dentists. Many people feel anxiety when having dental work done, so we try to eliminate as much stress as possible. We are happy to help you understand your cavity and the extent of the work that will be done and answer any questions you may have along the way.
At our office, we want you to relax, no matter the treatment and enjoy the luxury of our heated massage chairs, neck pillows, warm towels, spa music and more. To learn more about how we help our patients conquer dental anxiety, read our blog, Avoid Dental Anxiety at The Landing Dental Spa.
The number one way to prevent a cavity is through good oral hygiene. Regularly brushing your teeth and flossing is essential to oral health. If you are more susceptible to cavities, you can brush with fluoride toothpaste after eating or drinking or rinse your mouth with a fluoride mouthwash. Drinking tap water is another excellent way to ensure you’re getting essential minerals and fluoride into your diet. To learn more about fluoride, read our blog, Fluoride and its Benefits.
Teaching your child to brush and floss their teeth each day is the best way to help them prevent cavities and build oral hygiene habits they can practice into adulthood. However, there is another safeguard that we as dentists use to help fight against tooth decay, known as dental sealants. Read our blog, What Are Dental Sealants? Should My Child Have Them? to learn more about this preventive measure to see if it would be the right option for your child.
A regular visit to the dentist can help you understand your oral health and improve or change your oral routine. We also suggest avoiding frequent snacking and sugary foods and beverages. A combination of these tactics will be your best plan of attack to prevent cavities.
PREVENTIVE DENISTRY | THE LANDING DENTAL SPA
If you are prone to tooth decay and cavities, you should make sure to visit your dentist regularly. Checkups and cleanings are a great way to ensure you’re getting your fair share of dental hygiene and advice from a professional. In addition, the Landing Dental Spa would love to see you and help you keep up with that beautiful smile.
Preventive dentistry aids in the avoidance of cavities, gum disease, enamel wear, gingivitis and periodontitis. Your dentist will also look for any early signs of oral cancer, decay, or other problem areas during a dental visit. Therefore, we recommend that all individuals schedule regular checkups with their dentist, typically every six to 12 months.
Our dentists at The Landing Dental Spa care about your overall health and want you to have a healthy smile for years to come. If you would like to set up an appointment, give us a call at 304-594-2200 or fill out our online contact form. We look forward to hearing from you!