A Dental Cavity or decay is simply a hole in the tooth. This is due to the build up of acids produced by oral bacteria when we eat foods. These acids can dissolve or eat away at our teeth causing holes. This decay usually goes unnoticed until the tooth starts to feel sensitive to hot, cold, or sweet foods and drinks. On some occasions, the tooth will give a throbbing toothache which can be a sign that the decay has reached and damaged the nerve.
Dental decay worsens over time if not treated properly and quickly. The bacteria responsible for the decaying teeth feed on the leftover food and multiply quickly. A decayed tooth begins with sensitivity, to pain when chewing on food and could lead to a throbbing toothache. On some occasions, the infection can travel to other parts of the head and neck causing facial swellings and airway complications. To fully eliminate the pain, tooth removal and/or root canal therapy may be required.
Dental decay is a common condition that affects one-third of the world’s population. Luckily it is a largely treatable disease, with many options available. Treatment options include: tooth coloured filling with resin composite or ceramic inlay/onlay, and possible root canal therapy followed by a full-coverage crown. Unfortunately, if the decay becomes too deep, an extraction may become possible.
In this case, prevention is better than cure. As they remain largely unnoticed in their early stages, it is important to visit a dentist every 6 months to check up on your oral health and the possibility of tooth decay. Good dental care and healthy eating habits at home in between your dental checkups are also essential to minimise decay development.
If you think you may have a dental cavity, do not wait for it to get worse. Call us or book an appointment today
Your teeth are with you for life, so allow us to help you achieve and maintain that wonderful smile of yours!