What Causes Cavities?

Do you have chronic toothaches or tooth pain? Are you noticing pain in certain teeth but not in others? Do you have small holes in your tooth enamel? You most likely have tooth decay and cavities, a severe symptom of decay. Cavities are small pits or holes in the tooth enamel. Many patients with cavities also experience toothaches, bad breath, and tooth discoloration. Here you can find out how cavities form and how we treat our dental patients with cavities in Virginia Beach, VA. Our goal is to help patients minimize the chance of cavities and address problems like cavities if they do appear.

cavities in Virginia Beach, VA

What Causes Dental Cavities?

Although good bacteria in the mouth help keep the mouth healthy, harmful bacteria can cause problems like decay and cavities. Bacteria feed on sugar and starches in food debris left in the mouth. Patients who do not thoroughly clean their teeth and gums are more prone to cavities because of debris that can hide between teeth or buildup on the enamel. In addition, as the bacteria feed on the food debris, they release digestive acids that irritate the tooth enamel.

Over time, the bacteria eat away at the enamel, forming holes in teeth. Once bacteria enter the tooth chamber, it affects the dental pulp. The dental pulp is all the cells, nerves, and blood vessels in the tooth that keep it alive. Decayed dental pulp weakens the tooth and increases the likelihood of infecting nearby teeth. Patients need to visit the dentist regularly, twice a year, to prevent decay and lower their chance of developing cavities.

Prevent and Treat Cavities in Virginia Beach, VA

A good oral hygiene routine and regular dental care are the best preventative treatments against cavities and tooth decay. Brushing and flossing twice daily for two minutes (four minutes total) removes decay-causing bacteria from the mouth. Our dental hygienists use special dental tools at regular dental visits to clean the smile thoroughly. These small, precise tools allow hygienists to clean hard-to-reach areas of the mouth.

However, if patients already have cavities, we recommend root canal treatment. During a root canal, we remove the infected dental pulp. Then, we clean and disinfect the tooth chamber. Finally, we seal the tooth with a dental filling. Some patients may require dental crowns to cover severely worn or damaged teeth.

If patients have severe tooth decay, we may need to extract their teeth. After patients heal from their extraction, we recommend restorative dental care. For example, we can provide single dental implants or implant-secured dental restorations. Dental implants restore teeth with durable, natural-looking restorations.

Do you have a cavity? Receive comfortable root canal treatment and preventative care today. Call Coastal Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry at (757) 453-7657. You can also request a dental appointment with Dr. Sinclair online. If you have any questions about tooth decay or cavities, please let us know at your next dental visit. Please let us know if you have symptoms of tooth decay or cavities. We are here to help.