It’s difficult to notice a cavity on your own, especially if it’s small, but you can sometimes feel a large enough cavity with the tip of your tongue.
If you ignore it long enough, the cavity can lead to infection and cause you a lot of pain.
Good dental hygiene can prevent most cavities from forming, and seeing your dentist regularly can stop cavities before you need a tooth filling.
Cavities form when the hard enamel coating on the outside of your tooth becomes worn down and dissolves. What causes this breakdown?
Nasty, acid-releasing bacteria that live in your mouth. This bacteria is often found in plaque, which can build up on and in between the teeth and eat away at the enamel, forming holes in the teeth that can make it even easier for more food and bacteria to hide.
Keeping your teeth clean and free from debris keeps cavities from forming and keep you from needing fillings.
How Fillings Work
Fillings are a common and standard dental procedure. If your dentist finds one during a check up, they’ll spell out the next steps right then and there. Dental fillings usually only take three steps:
- Decayed material is removed.
- The cavity is cleaned.
- The tooth is filled.
Types of Fillings
Fillings are commonly made of nearly-invisible, tooth-colored porcelain or resin.
Amalgam fillings are also very common, and they’re a mixture of metal and other materials, and have a metallic grey or silver appearance. They’re more noticeable than porcelain and resin fillings, but are also much stronger and can last for years without needing to be replaced.
Gold fillings are less common, but they are strong, stable, fit well, and are just as wear-resistant as natural tooth structure.
Got a Cavity? Act Fast
If you have a cavity, don’t hesitate, see your dentist as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the larger it gets, the more pain you’ll be in, and the more damage it does. If you think you have a cavity, call us 808-748-4985 and schedule a dentist appointment as soon as you can!