Tooth decay is a process of degeneration resulting in damage to your teeth. It has serious effects on your long-term dental health, so schedule an appointment with your dentist immediately. When you take good care of your teeth, it can be disheartening to learn that you have a cavity. You may even be tempted to do nothing, but untreated cavities can lead to more serious dental problems.
Effects of untreated cavities
Here’s what can happen if a cavity is left untreated:
Increased tooth sensitivity
The initial signs of an untreated cavity include your teeth becoming sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. You may notice that a very hot or cold drink is no longer enjoyable. This means that you have problems with your teeth and you should address them immediately.
Completing daily activities that use your teeth could cause discomfort and pain. This could become worse over time, and indicate the formation of other more substantial oral health issues.
The bacteria, acids, food debris, and saliva combine to form plaque, which clings and damages the teeth and the gums. Then, an abscess forms around the root of the infected tooth. Extreme decay at your tooth’s roots can lead to tooth and gum swelling. See your dentist immediately to prevent the spread of infection and to address the emergentness of additional health issues that could form due to decay.
As the bacteria and decay reach your tooth’s roots, you may need root canal treatment or an extraction. A root canal can help keep the tooth without the need for a full extraction. An extraction, on the other hand, is required if there is extensive damage. In this case, the entire tooth would be removed. Then, you would need to consider the different ways to replace the tooth.
To prevent tooth decay, here are a few things you should do:
- Brush and floss diligently two times per day
- Limit your sugar and carbohydrates intake
- Visit your dentist twice per year for an in-depth examination
If you have a cavity that you have been avoiding having treated, the best thing you can do for your overall health is to have it treated as soon as possible. Untreated cavities are painful and are expensive to treat.
A dental cavity is a common health problem, experienced by people of all ages. It is usually caused by the accumulation of bacteria in a person’s mouth. The bacteria in the mouth convert sugar and starch into acids. Bacteria, acid, food pieces, and saliva make up the plaque that irritates the gums. The acids in the plaque can cause damage to the enamel covering your teeth, creating holes called cavities.
When a cavity is left untreated, you can experience tooth sensitivity, pain, swelling, and eventual decay. Do not wait for all of these to occur before visiting your dentist.
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