Le Dentistry & Associates
Dentists located in Norcross, GA
Cavities are common, as 91% of Americans over age 20 have had a cavity at some point during their lives. If left untreated, cavities can lead to severe tooth decay, loose teeth, and even tooth loss. Phuong Le, DMD, and the experienced dental staff treat cavities at Le Dentistry & Associates They use fillings to restore your tooth and prevent further decay. Call the Norcross, Georgia, office to schedule a dental cleaning and exam today or book an appointment online.
Cavities Q & A
What are cavities?
Cavities are decayed parts of the hard surface of teeth that develop into tiny holes or openings over time. Cavities, also known as dental caries, can occur due to:
- Bacteria in your mouth
- Excessive plaque
- Frequent snacking on sugary foods
- Poor oral hygiene
- Genetic factors
- Too little fluoride
- Worn fillings
Cavities are common and easily treatable when caught early. If left untreated, they can turn into severe decay or an infection that requires a root canal or tooth extraction. Regular dental visits are the best way to catch cavities early before serious problems arise.
What are the symptoms of cavities?
You may not experience symptoms at all with small cavities, but over time, you might notice the following symptoms:
- Tooth sensitivity
- Mild or sharp pain when eating or drinking
- Pain when you bite down
- A toothache
- Visible pits or holes in your teeth
- White, black, or brown teeth staining
Over time, cavities lead to advanced tooth decay, severe pain, swelling, or pus around a tooth. Don’t wait for a cavity to become a serious problem, as early treatment is often quick and painless.
What should I expect during treatment?
Prior to cavity treatment, your dentist completes a thorough dental exam and takes X-rays. Your treatment plan depends on how severe your cavity is. It might be as simple as a fluoride treatment for cavities that have just started.
Fillings are common treatments for cavities. Your dentist cleans out the decayed area of your tooth and applies filling material to restore it and prevent future decay.
The dental team at Le Dentistry & Associates may also place a durable crown, or cap, on the tooth to protect it after drilling and cleaning out the decayed portion.
For more severe tooth decay, you might require a root canal. Your dentist cleans out the pulp of your tooth, or the inside of it, removes bacteria and debris, fills the empty space with dental materials, and may place a crown on top for added protection.
How can I prevent cavities?
To help prevent cavities from developing, try the following strategies:
- Brush twice daily using a fluoride toothpaste
- Floss every day
- Follow a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables
- Avoid snacking on sugary foods and drinks
- Attend regular dental cleanings and exams
- Ask your dentist about supplemental fluoride or sealants
- Use an antiseptic mouthwash
Although cavities are common, don’t let them ruin your beautiful smile. Schedule a dental cleaning and exam at Le Dentistry & Associates, or book an appointment online today.