Each dental patient’s mouth has a somewhat varied appearance of cavities. Learning from the Internet about what do cavities look like may not be of great help because it’s different in different people. To find them, we may need to look at the teeth very slowly and attentively or even utilize x-rays. As additional cues regarding where to seek, we also use the patient’s symptoms.
Early on, cavities could resemble tooth discoloration or a small stain. The cavities grow larger and typically darken as they develop. Eventually, a little dot might nearly completely devour the tooth.
What Signs Point to a Cavity?
It can be challenging to detect a cavity in your own mouth. When examining patients, even dental experts frequently require the use of a mirror. Nonetheless, you might detect a hollow. Dental cavity issues frequently overlap with symptoms. If you feel any of the following, schedule a visit with your dentist right away:
- sensitivity of the teeth, particularly to cold or heat
- pain (may be intense) (may be extreme)
- swelling of the jaw or mouth
- bleeding or swollen gums
- having trouble chewing (may cause weight loss and malnutrition)
- gums or teeth that are pussy (indicates an infection or abscess)
- tooth loss, fracture, or chipping
- a visible or palpable pit or crater on a tooth
- a tooth with a soft or “boggy” area
- a tooth with dark dots
- persistent poor breath or a disagreeable aftertaste
Risk Factors of Cavities
There are a lot of factors that could increase the likelihood that you or a family member will get cavities:
- ingesting specific foods and beverages, particularly sugary ones like milk, soda, candies, dry cereal, and dried fruit that stick to the teeth and aren’t easily washed away by saliva
- drinking soda or other sweet drinks all day
- regularly snacking
- baby bottles and toddler sippy cups consumed before bedtime leave sugars on the teeth for several hours.
- chemotherapy, not getting enough fluids, certain medical problems, and drugs, as well as several other factors, can all contribute to dry mouth and reduced saliva production.
- extreme youth and aging
- insufficient or irregular brushing
- molars and back teeth are particularly vulnerable because they are the most difficult to access and have more surface holes that trap plaque and carbohydrates.
- insufficient fluoride
- old cavities with worn or damaged fillings
- stomach acid flowing back into the mouth, also known as acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease, damages the enamel.
- eating disorders: frequent vomiting or a lack of salivation can lead to tooth erosion.
What do cavities look like when the are formed
Cavities are technically brought on by a three-stage process of gradual tooth deterioration.
Development of plaque
When you consume a lot of sugars, particularly carbohydrates, and neglect to properly brush your teeth, the regular oral bacteria in your mouth feed on the sugars, causing plaque to build on your teeth. Plaque is a transparent, slightly sticky film. If you hadn’t brushed your teeth in a while, you might have felt it on your teeth.
When plaque turns into tartar, also known as calculus, it becomes more difficult to remove and serves to protect the bacteria that initially form plaque. Plaque can also penetrate the gum line and lead to periodontitis or gum disease.
Invasion of plaque
The minerals in enamel, the tough outer layer, are eaten away by plaque on the tooth’s surface. The earliest kind of cavities are tiny holes that occur in the enamel. Plaque’s bacteria and acids have an easier time advancing towards the dentin as a result. The nerves beneath the dentin are connected by tiny tubes. Because of this, tooth sensitivity frequently identifies this stage of cavity formation.
Keeping on destroying the tooth
If nothing is done, tooth erosion will eventually reach the pulp, which is the innermost component of the tooth. All blood vessels and nerves are located here. The pulp may swell and become irritated if bacteria are present. The swelling’s pressure causes excruciating nerve pain.
The answer to what do cavities look like may vary depending on your condition!