Toronto Cavity Treatment with Fillings and Crowns
If you believe only children get cavities, you could be putting yourself at risk of this common form of tooth decay. Tooth enamel is one of the hardest substances in the human body, but it can be damaged by everyday habits and favourite foods. Before you know it, you could be facing extreme discomfort and sensitivity. We want to help you avoid all that pain by presenting a brief look at what causes cavities, how you know you have one, and the typical cavity treatments at our Toronto cosmetic dentistry practice.
What Causes Cavities?
Cavities are usually caused by a combination of poor hygiene along with a diet full of sugary or starchy foods – such as bread, milk, soda, fruit, and candy. Without proper brushing and flossing, these foods are left on the surface of your teeth and invite bacteria to the scene. To digest the food bits, the bacteria produces acid that literally dissolves tooth enamel. This leads to decay, usually in the form of cavities – or little holes in your teeth. Without regular cleanings at your dentist’s office, plaque can build up and provide an even better environment for bacteria to thrive in.
Are Cavities Common in Adults?
Yes! It’s estimated that one in five adults, or 20 percent, has one or more cavities. It’s especially common in people over age 50, when gum recession and gum disease are more likely; gum recession and gum disease can increase the risk of decay in hard-to-reach places below the gum line. Adults can also develop cavities around the edges of older fillings that have weakened or fractured over time.
What Are the Symptoms of a Cavity?
At some point in the decay process, you will likely notice one or more of these symptoms:
- Sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet foods or drinks
- Visible pits or holes in your teeth
If you have any of these symptoms, you should come in for an appointment as soon as possible. At our office, cavities can be diagnosed by X-rays and/or by probing the surface of the tooth, which will feel soft.
How Are Cavities Treated?
Traditional treatments for cavities include fillings and dental crowns. If decay is minimal, the decayed portion of the tooth is removed and replaced with a filling. Today, most fillings are made of tooth-coloured composite resin. If you tend to have cavities frequently, we may recommend fluoride treatments and dental sealants to help protect your teeth.
If the decay is more serious and there isn’t enough healthy tooth structure to support a filling, a dental crown might be placed over the entire tooth. Modern dental crowns are often composed of porcelain, which provides a strong restoration that blends in with surrounding teeth.
In severe cases, the decay can reach the nerves or pulp and cause an infection deep inside the tooth. In these cases, root canal therapy will be needed. After the entire core of the tooth is removed, the roots are filled with a sealant and a crown is placed over the tooth if needed.
Learn More about Cavities Treatment
At The Art of Dentistry, we’re devoted to ensuring that each of our patients receives the highest quality of care for optimal oral health. If you think you have a cavity, or if you would like to replace old fillings or crowns with stronger, more natural-looking restorations, we invite you to schedule an appointment to see Dr. Weiss at your convenience.
Related article: Causes of Tooth Pain