What Dental Cavities Reveal About Your Oral Health
There is no “last-minute” effort when it comes to your dental care. Most of your dental problems, cavities included, are the result of long-term patterns.
While we’re on the subject…
The technical (impress-your-friends) word is “dental caries.” You know them as “cavities.”
They are the result of ongoing tooth decay. And their diagnosis is most often traceable to prioritizing your dental check-ups and professional teeth cleanings with your dental hygienist.
The sugar-connection isn’t what you think
Sugar gets bad “press.” Eat sugar…get cavities…right?
True, a diet high in sugar isn’t best for your teeth and gums. But the blame is best placed on the bacteria that live in your mouth.
Avoiding sugar altogether isn’t realistic. Removing it from your teeth and gum tissue is!
Oral bacteria feed on the sugars and other food substances that are allowed to remain on your tooth surfaces and deep within your gum pockets (the spaces between your teeth and gums).
As bacteria feed they break down your tooth structure (decay). Once decay progresses a cavity develops.
Spotting decay and cavities is a primary focus of your preventive dentistry appointments that include a dental examination and teeth cleaning. Your dentist will examine each tooth structure looking for weakened areas or those that reveal obvious signs of decay.
- Noticeable spots or discoloration on your tooth
- A heightened level of teeth sensitivity
- Holes, pits, or indentions in your teeth
- An ongoing toothache
The earlier these symptoms are observed and diagnosed the better. Topical fluoride can be used to strengthen your tooth enamel on those areas that have been weakened by beginning decay.
Removing the decay and treating the cavity with a dental filling is often necessary. Larger cavities can require the restoration of your tooth structure with a dental crown and an inlay or onlay.
In severe cases, root canal can be necessary to save your tooth. Otherwise an extraction will be recommended and require potential follow-up with a tooth replacement.
Cavity prevention begins with a preventive dental mindset. Keep your tooth surfaces and gum tissue clean and free from lingering sugar and food particles.
Contact our Morris Park or Bronx dental office and find out more.
Morris Park Dental Associates
960 Morris Park Avenue
Bronx, NY 10462
(718) DR-SMILE (718-578-4109)