What Are the Treatment Options for Teeth Decay?

What Are the Treatment Options for Teeth Decay?

Feb 12, 2021

Does my child have a cavity? Well, if they have tiny holes in the tooth surface, they have dental cavities. Dental cavities are the most common dental problems that affect all people, but mostly children.

What Are Cavities and How Do They Form?

Teeth cavities are the tiny holes that form on the chewing surface of the teeth. Cavities carries or tooth decay are caused by several factors, chief among them being poor hygiene.

Other risk factors include the sugary foods that feed the bacteria present in the mouth. Dry mouth, insufficient fluoride use, and acid reflux are also factors that can contribute to decay.

Dental carries are silent in the early stages, and that is why they mostly go unnoticed. It’s only through regular checkups that the dentist can detect dental cavities. 

As the teeth cavities advance you can begin to experience, tooth sensitivity, pain, and black or white staining of the teeth.

If left untreated, dental cavities can advance and cause permanent damage to your teeth. This can lead to severe consequences or worse loss of teeth. 

Treatment Options

If your child complains about tooth sensitivity when they eat hot or cold food, then it is time to visit a children’s dentist office in San Diego. Our dentist will perform a comprehensive dental checkup to assess the severity of the dental decay. Next, we will choose a suitable treatment option. 

.Some of the treatments that the dentist can recommend include:

1. Fluoride treatments 

Fluoride treatment is recommended for mild dental cavities. Fluoride, nature’s tooth cavity fighter, strengthens the enamel and makes it hard enough to withstand bacterial attacks. The mineral also helps to reverse mild cavities. 

The use of fluoride toothpaste should begin at age two. It’s not until age six that the dentist will apply the fluoride varnish on the teeth. The varnish is applied to limit the chances of the child swallowing fluoride. 

Fluoride treatment can be done every three, six, or 12 months depending on your risk level.

2. Dental fillings 

Fillings are the main treatment option when the cavity has advanced from the initial stage. The dentist will remove the decayed part and replace it with a dental filling. 

Teeth fillings are available in different materials like tooth-colored composite, porcelain, and amalgam. 

3. Crowns

If you have an extensive dental cavity, the dentist may recommend a dental crown. These are custom-fitted caps that encases the entire tooth. The crowns are available in gold, porcelain, resin, or stainless steel. The dentist will drill the teeth to make space for the dental crowns. 

4. Root canals 

When the decay is untreated, it can spread to the inner part of the teeth (pulp). This will cause the teeth to become extremely sensitive. You’ll also experience darkening, swelling, and bleeding gums. A root canal is done to save a tooth that is badly damaged or infected. 

The procedure requires at least two dental visits. The dentist will remove the infected pulp, clean the canal, and fill it with a filling. On the second dental visit, a dental crown is fixed to restore the function of the teeth. 

5. Tooth extraction 

If the tooth is severely decaying and damaged and cannot be saved, the dentist will result in tooth extraction. 

Extraction involves the pulling of the teeth from the socket. The procedure is done under local anesthesia, but, at times, dental sedation is used to calm and relax patients with dental phobia.

The problem with extraction is that it leaves unsightly gaps in the mouth. Not replacing the missing teeth can also cause the supporting bone to deteriorate, further weakening the teeth. Once the teeth are removed, it is vital to ask the dentist about the available treatments for replacing the teeth. 

How to Prevent Dental Cavities 

Dental cavities are preventable and treatable if caught early. Here are some tips that can help:

  • Maintain proper dental hygiene 
  • Get regular cleaning and checkups
  • Eat teeth-friendly foods
  • Get fluoride treatments
  • Schedule an Appointment 

    Visit Scripps Poway Dental Care for more information on the warning signs of a tooth cavity and how you can prevent it.

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