Plaque is responsible for tooth decay. Its build up on your teeth helps in acid formation causing holes in the teeth over time (dental caries). The plaque can also cause other dental problems including gum disease or dental abscesses. And what you eat, and how you take oral care is responsible for the buildup of plaque. Clearly, tooth decay is not a serious problem if you find out its presence in early stages and consult the dentist immediately. There are treatment options that can get rid of cavities and restore your dental health.
Symptoms of tooth decay
Pain is not always a symptom of tooth decay though its presence can’t be ruled in when the severity of the problem has grown. So, naturally, most of the symptoms of tooth decay would actually be of dental caries. They might include –
- Mild or severe pain of either continuous or occasional type
- Pain without any visible sign
- Tooth sensitivity or pain when consuming something hot, cold or sweet
- Your teeth developing spots of grey, black or brown color
- Bad breathe with or without an unpleasant taste in the mouth
Tooth decay treatment
Tooth decay is treatable. However, the treatment will depend on how advanced the problem is. Clearly, you should never delay when you teeth are decaying and seek immediate help from the dentist. The treatment may involve –
- Treatment for early stage decay
When your tooth decay is still in early stage, the dentist will focus only on the amount of sugar in your diet and try to control it. The treatment will be basic in nature where a gel, paste or varnish may be applied to the area. This is done to provide strength to the enamel. This is how the teeth’s resistance to the acids from plaque boosts up and tooth decay is treated.
- Treatment to remove the dental decay
If the decay has entered the next round, or if it has crossed the basic level of severity, the dentist then may focus on a crown or filling with you. This treatment will basically center on the removal of the dental decay. The procedure will involve filling the hole after numbing the tooth to minimize risks of cavity.
- Treatment when the decay has reached to the pulp
Dental cavity keeps advancing if you don’t seek timely treatment for it. So, naturally, it will spread to the pulp or reach where the tooth contains nerves and blood. In such condition, only root canal treatment can help in removal of the cavity.
- Treatment when the tooth is damaged beyond restoration
Cavity can damage your tooth to so level that it can’t be restore. In such cases, the only option available is the removal of the tooth. So, the replacement could be done using either an implant, bridge or partial denture.
Prevention of tooth decay
Tooth decay may pose risks to your teeth structure but it’s entirely preventable. If you know how to care for your teeth and gums, there won’t be any cavity even in your teeth. These steps can help in prevention of the decay –
- Visit your dentist twice a year to get yourself checked
- Have regular examinations of your mouth, teeth and gums
- Take oral care seriously and never miss your brushing, flossing and tongue cleaning routine
- Minimize your intake of sugary and starchy foods and drinks
- Use only a fluoride-rich paste for brushing
- Stay away from smoking and alcohol
- Cut your intake of tea and coffee
- Eat healthy, drink plenty of water and maintain dental health
- Focus more on oral care than tooth decay treatment to keep cavity away