Cavities & Treatment Options
Have a Cavity? Visit Wausau Area Dentist Dr. Tyler Glaser
What Are Cavities?
avities are permanently damaged areas in the hard surface of your teeth that develop into tiny openings or holes. Cavities, also called tooth decay or caries, are caused by a combination of factors, including bacteria in your mouth, frequent snacking, sipping sugary drinks and not cleaning your teeth well.
If cavities aren’t treated, they become larger and affect deeper layers of your teeth. Cavities can lead to more series dental problems:
- Severe toothache
- Tooth loss
- Tooth abscess
- Broken teeth
- Chewing problems
In addition to dental problems, other health complications can occur:
- The pain from cavities can interfere with daily living
- Nutrition problems caused by painful or difficult chewing
- Tooth loss that may affect your self-esteem and confidence
Regular dental visits and good brushing and flossing habits are your best protection against cavities and tooth decay.
What Are Cavity Symptoms?
Depending on where the cavity is located and how much damage to the tooth is already done, they signs and symptoms may vary. When a cavity is just beginning, you may have no symptoms at all. As the decay grows larger it may cause symptoms such as:
- Toothache, spontaneous pain or pain that occurs without any apparent cause
- Tooth sensitivity
- Mild to sharp pain when eating or drinking something sweet, hot or cold
- Visible holes or pits in your teeth
- Brown, black or white staining on any surface of a tooth
- Pain when you bite down
If you’re experiencing symptoms of cavities make an appointment with Glaser Dental. Dr. Glaser will look at the health of your teeth and identify any issues, including cavities, that may be causing you discomfort. He will then discuss your best treatment options and plans to move to get your teeth healthy again.
When Should I See Dr. Glaser About Cavities?
It’s important to have regular dental cleaning and checkups even if your mouth feels fine as you may not be aware that a cavity is forming. If you are experiencing a toothache or pain, call 715-359-4344 now to schedule your visit for cavity diagnosis and treatment with Dr. Glaser or schedule online at: FIX CAVITIES – WAUSAU.
How Tooth Decay Develops:
- Plaque forms. Dental plaque is a clear sticky film that coats your teeth. Plaque can form as the result of eating a lot of sugars and starches and not cleaning your teeth well. When sugars and starches aren’t cleaned off your teeth, bacteria quickly begin feeding on them and form plaque. Plaque that stays on your teeth can harden under or above your gum line into tartar (calculus). Tartar makes plaque more difficult to remove and creates a shield for bacteria.
- Plaque attacks. The acids in plaque remove minerals in your tooth’s hard, outer enamel. This erosion causes tiny openings or holes in the enamel — the first stage of cavities. Once areas of enamel are worn away, the bacteria and acid can reach the next layer of your teeth, called dentin. This layer is softer than enamel and less resistant to acid. Dentin has tiny tubes that directly communicate with the nerve of the tooth causing sensitivity.
- Destruction continues. As tooth decay develops, the bacteria and acid continue their march through your teeth, moving next to the inner tooth material (pulp) that contains nerves and blood vessels. The pulp becomes swollen and irritated from the bacteria. Because there is no place for the swelling to expand inside of a tooth, the nerve becomes pressed, causing pain. Discomfort can even extend outside of the tooth root to the bone.