Cavities are a common reason for dental visits. Most of us aim to prevent them through good oral care, such as regular brushing and flossing. This can help avoid the need for dental fillings and more invasive procedures.
Supreme Dentistry offers dental fillings in Houston, TX, to help restore the appearance and function of teeth affected by cavities. We can also provide you with dental care that can help you avoid cavities in the first place. Call us today at 844.966.2333 to schedule an appointment to get your oral health back on track.
What Is a Cavity?
When food and bacteria build up in your teeth, it can form plaque. It is the bacteria in plaque that erodes the enamel of your teeth. Enamel is the protective layer covering your teeth. Your tooth is defenseless once this layer has been worn away or dissolved by bacteria. Bacteria then eat away at your tooth, causing a cavity. A cavity is simply a hole in your tooth.
When left untreated, it eventually destroys the tooth. This is called tooth decay and can seriously affect your entire body, not just your mouth. This is why brushing and flossing after every meal are important because they prevent plaque from developing. Similarly, regular teeth cleanings are an excellent way to remove and prevent plaque buildup, while fluoride treatments can strengthen enamel. All of this helps prevent cavities from developing and keep up your oral health.
Signs of Cavities
There are some fairly direct and simple ways to tell if you or your child may have a cavity. Perhaps the clearest sign is seeing a hole or pit in your tooth. Cavities can also be felt by your tongue when you run it over the surface of your teeth. You need to make an appointment with Supreme Dentistry when you notice this.
If you are wondering how to know if you have a cavity, here are five signs of cavities:
1. Temperature Sensitivity
It could be a sign you have a cavity, whether it’s too hot or cold liquids or foods (or both) when your teeth start experiencing sensitivity while eating or after. Usually, tooth sensitivity emerges because your enamel has worn away, and if this is the case, the likelihood of a cavity increases.
2. Sensitivity to Sweets
Temperature sensitivity is the most common and immediate sign of a cavity. Still, a lingering sensitivity after eating something sweet or having a sugary drink can also suggest cavities may be present.
You likely have a cavity when you experience an ongoing dull ache or sharp pain in one or more of your teeth. Such pain is a direct symptom of a cavity. Toothaches can arise when you bite down, as well as persistent jaw pain. Either way, it’s necessary to see your dentist.
It can be a sign of trouble if you notice white spots on your teeth. Stains or discoloration often appear first as irregularly shaped white spots but then can turn darker to brown or black.
5. Bad Breath and Unpleasant Taste
A sign you have cavities can be bad breath caused by the bacteria in your mouth. An infected tooth can also cause bad breath. The same bacteria can affect how you taste. If you are experiencing persistent bad breath, you need to talk with your dentist.
How to Prevent Cavities
Preventing cavities is not complex but requires consistency and the right approach. Here are some ways you can take to help prevent cavities:
- Maintain oral hygiene – Brush your teeth twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and floss daily to remove plaque buildup. Replace your toothbrush every three to four months or sooner if the bristles are frayed.
- Regular dental checkups – Schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings. Your dentist can detect early signs of dental problems and provide suitable treatments.
- Healthy eating habits – Limit sugary drinks and snacks. Stick to a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy products.
- Fluoride treatments – Consider fluoride treatments. Fluoride not only prevents tooth decay, but it can also reverse the early stages of decay.
- Dental sealants – Ask your dentist about dental sealants. A sealant is a protective coating applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth, preventing food from getting stuck and causing decay.
Remember, your oral health is a mirror of your overall well-being. By making these simple steps a part of your daily routine, you can keep cavities at bay and enjoy a healthy, confident smile.
Call Supreme Dentistry to Schedule a Dental Appointment to Prevent Cavities
To avoid dental cavities, do your best to practice good oral hygiene. Let your dentist at Supreme Dentistry know if you are experiencing any of the signs mentioned above. The sooner you catch a cavity, the better your chances are of only needing a dental filling rather than a more invasive procedure. At Supreme Dentistry, we’re proud to provide family and other general dentistry services to our patients and emergency dental services.