All You Need To Know About Dental Cavities

dental caries

Taking care of our dental health is vital for our overall well-being, and one common issue that many individuals face is dental cavities. Dental cavities, also known as tooth decay or dental caries, can cause discomfort and potentially lead to more severe oral health problems if left unattended. In this article, we will look into the nature of a tooth cavity, its symptoms, causes, available treatments, and effective prevention tips.

What are Dental Cavities?

Dental cavities refer to areas of decay that occur on the surface of the teeth. They occur when the tooth structure is gradually destroyed by a combination of bacteria, acid production by these bacteria, and certain dietary factors. Initially, tooth decay may start as small pits or holes on the tooth surface but can progress and expand if not treated promptly.

Dental Cavities Symptoms

  • Experiencing sensitivity or pain in the affected tooth, particularly while consuming hot, cold, or sugary foods.
  • Noticing visible dental cavities or dark spots on the surface of the tooth.
  • Observing the presence of brown, black, or white spots on the tooth, indicating possible decay.
  • Suffering from persistent bad breath, which may result from bacterial activity in the decayed tooth.
  • Feeling discomfort or pain when biting down or applying pressure to the affected tooth.
  • In advanced cases, the occurrence of pus or an abscess around the affected tooth is accompanied by swelling and pain.

Causes of Dental Cavities

1. Poor Oral Hygiene

Inadequate brushing and flossing allow plaque, a sticky bacterial film, to accumulate on the tooth surface, leading to cavities.

2. High Sugar and Starch Consumption

Frequent consumption of sugary and starchy foods and beverages provides a fuel source for bacteria to produce acids that attack tooth enamel which over time can lead to the problem of rotting teeth slowly.

3. Acidic Foods and Drinks

The consumption of acidic foods and beverages can erode tooth enamel, making it more susceptible to decay.

4. Dry Mouth

Reduced saliva production due to a dry mouth condition increases the risk of cavities since saliva helps neutralise acids and prevent tooth decay.

5. Plaque Build-up

Neglecting regular plaque removal through proper oral hygiene practices allows it to harden into tartar, contributing to cavity formation.

6. Tooth Anatomy

Tooth surfaces with deep pits and fissures provide ideal hiding spots for bacteria, making these areas more prone to dental caries.

How are Dental Cavities Treated?

The appropriate treatment for dental cavities depends on the severity and extent of the decay. Common tooth cavity treatment options include

1. Dental Fillings

The most common method is a dental filling which involves removing the decayed portion of the tooth and filling the cavity with materials such as composite resin, porcelain, or amalgam.

2. Dental Crowns

Extensive decay that compromises the tooth's structural integrity may require the placement of a dental crown. This protective cap restores the tooth's shape and function.

3. Root Canal Therapy

When decay reaches the tooth pulp, a root canal procedure may be necessary. It involves removing the infected pulp, cleaning the root canals, and sealing them to prevent further infection.

4. Tooth Extraction

In severe cases where the tooth cannot be saved, extraction may be necessary. The extracted tooth can be replaced with dental implants, bridges, or dentures to restore oral functionality.

Tips to Prevent Dental Cavities

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day using fluoride toothpaste and ensure you clean between your teeth with dental floss.
  • Minimise your consumption of sugary snacks, candies, and beverages, as well as acidic foods like citrus fruits and sodas.
  • Incorporate fluoride toothpaste into your oral care routine and consider using a fluoride mouthwash or seeking professional fluoride treatments from your dentist.
  • Schedule regular visits to your dentist for check-ups and professional cleanings. Dentists can detect early signs of cavities and provide appropriate treatments before they worsen.
  • Dental sealants are thin protective coatings applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. They act as a barrier against bacteria and acids, reducing the risk of cavities.

Dental cavities are a prevalent dental issue that, if left untreated, can lead to discomfort, pain, and more severe oral health complications. Prioritising good oral hygiene, maintaining a healthy diet, and visiting your dentist regularly are crucial steps in preventing cavities. By implementing these preventive measures and promptly addressing any signs or symptoms of cavities, you can ensure a healthy and cavity-free smile.


What is a dental cavity?

A dental cavity refers to a decayed area within a tooth caused by factors like bacteria, acid, and diet, destroying tooth structure.

Can a dental cavity be cured?

Yes, dental cavities can be treated and cured. The usual approach involves removing the decayed part of the tooth and filling the cavity with materials such as composite resin, porcelain, or amalgam.

How can we remove cavities from teeth?

The removal of cavities from teeth involves undergoing dental treatment where the decayed portion of the tooth is carefully eliminated using specialised dental instruments, followed by filling the cavity with appropriate materials.

Is filling a cavity painful?

The process of filling a cavity is generally performed under the administration of local anaesthesia, ensuring the numbing of the treated area and minimising any discomfort or pain experienced during the procedure.

blog / oral care / All You Need To Know About Dental Cavities

other related articles

download app

AMPA Orthodontics Pvt. Ltd. An ISO 13485:2016 Quality Management System certified by Zenith Quality Assessors Pvt Ltd and US FDA Cleared.© 2022 makeO. All right reserved.