A general and family dentist in Fallston, Dr. Melissa Elliott has experience in treating tooth cavities in both children and adults.
What Causes Tooth Cavities
Tooth decay is permanently damaged areas on the surface of a tooth that develop into tiny holes. At the beginning stages, these tiny holes are only visible by a dentist and will likely not cause any harmful symptoms. Most tooth cavities are caused by a lack of proper oral care.
Not taking proper care of your teeth (daily brushing and flossing) will result in a buildup of plaque along the gums and teeth. When plaque comes in contact with sugar and starch, it activates bacteria in plaque. This causes the bacteria to attack and erode tooth enamel. As the tooth enamel breaks down and wears away, it creates dental cavities.
Tips to Prevent Tooth Cavities:
- Visit the dentist twice a year for teeth cleanings and exams
- Brush teeth at least twice a day using fluoride toothpaste (if over the age of 2)
- Floss daily to prevent cavities from forming between teeth
- Limit sugary snacks and soda and maintain a healthy diet
Tooth Cavity Symptoms
In the early stages of a tooth cavity, patients experience no symptoms. A dentist, however, will be able to see signs of early tooth decay and can prevent the tooth cavity from forming or getting worse.
As the tooth cavity gets larger, symptoms may include toothache, tooth sensitivity, and inflammation of the gums around the tooth or teeth.
Treatment For Tooth Cavities
If you have a tooth cavity or if your teeth are showing signs of decay, Dr. Elliott offers general dentistry treatments to provide stability and protection to those teeth. Cosmetic tooth fillings (fillings that are tooth-colored) are often used to treat teeth with early stages of tooth decay.
Other options are inlays, onlays, and dental crowns. It is important to have Dr. Elliott treat teeth cavities when found. Tooth decay is a progressive disease and will require a more invasive treatment like a root canal or even extraction if ignored.
Tooth Cavities in Children
The most common chronic childhood disease in America is tooth decay. According to the American Dental Association, over 50% of first-graders and 80% of 17-year-olds have cavities. Pediatric dentistry is very important to help children and teens establish healthy mouths early for a lifetime of smiles.
As a Fallston family dentist, Dr. Elliott treats children to prevent and treat tooth cavities. We suggest that your children visit our office every six months. This is important for a few reasons: they will become comfortable in a dentist office, they trust our dental staff, to educate them about proper oral hygiene, and to spot any dental issues early.
Schedule a Dental Exam Today
Contact Harford County Dentistry for teeth cleaning and tooth cavity screening. We offer many treatments for a tooth cavity near Bel Air, MD, and Fallston, MD. Our dental office is located at 1810 Bel Air Road in Fallston, Maryland. Call 410-994-2627 for an appointment or request an appointment online.