Dental decay (also known as cavities or caries) is among the main dental disorders that appear when bacteria in the mouth attacks the teeth. Left untreated, the bacteria can cause infections and can even lead to loss of the damaged tooth. Dental decay can occur due to the consumption of excessive carbonated drinks or sugar, as well as poor oral hygiene.
Regular check-ups at the dentist and a rigorous oral health routine are the best methods to prevent the occurrence of dental decay.
Types of dental decay
In the case of early/minor dental decay, patients can experience sensitivity to cold or hot, sweet or sour. A dental examination is needed to identify the decay – it can difficult to see at home due to their position on the surface of the teeth – and all symptoms are usually relieved immediately following treatment. In our clinic, we use materials that provide an aesthetic and functional outcome for all our patients, removing the decay and restoring the affected teeth to look completely natural.
If left untreated, dental decay can develop extremely quickly. This can cause spontaneous and long-lasting pain, which is especially apparent during the night and is not always relived with pain medication. This can also affect the dental nerve and requires, in most cases, a root canal treatment before the final filling. In severe cases, an infection can develop around the pulp of the tooth, which can lead to a dental abscess and can be difficult to diagnose as it can cause no symptoms.
Stopping dental decay before it gets to this point is therefore crucial. Rigorous oral hygiene, avoidance of excessive consumption of sweets (especially the sticky ones like caramel), as well as regular scaling in the dental clinic, can prevent the decay in the first place.