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When the enamel that covers your teeth is damaged or compromised in any way, it leads to tooth decay. As the decay progressively gets worse, cavities can occur. A cavity is a small hole or opening that leads into the center of your tooth. This can cause an infection or an abscess that damages the nerve inside the tooth, resulting in pain and discomfort. Toothaches and bleeding gums are just two signs that you may have a problem with tooth decay, cavity, or an abscess.
Cavities and decay can appear as small spots on the surface of the teeth. Small cracks or holes may also begin to appear. Other signs of tooth decay include:
Plaque building on the surface of your teeth can wear away the enamel, causing a rough and discolored look.
If an abscess or cavity has started to develop, you may experience bad breath or slight irritation of your gums.
Cavities should be treated immediately to prevent the loss of your tooth. If left untreated, the damage could spread throughout your tooth. Filling a cavity while it is still very small is a much better treatment option than having to endure a root canal or tooth extraction. New filling materials are designed to be the same color as your teeth; so they are practically invisible and will last for several years. Repairing cavities as they occur will prevent infections and other health conditions from worsening.
With proper dental care, you can prevent tooth decay from damaging your teeth.
Brushing and flossing every day will prevent plaque build-up and keep bacteria to a minimum.
It’s also important to visit your dentist once a year to have your teeth cleaned and checked for cavities and other abnormalities.
Taking proper care of your teeth will keep your smile bright and your teeth healthy for many years. If you happen to see signs of tooth decay, schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible so you can get it taken care of before lasting damage occurs.