Symptoms of Cavity Infiltration in Adult Teeth
Taking care of your oral health is very important, and knowing the symptoms of cavity damage to your teeth is a big part of that.
Cavities are formed when food left on the teeth grows bacteria. Twenty minutes after you eat, plaque and bacteria are already doing their handiwork in your mouth. This bacteria produces acid, which etches into the tooth. Once the acid has broken through the enamel, your tooth is exposed and open to cavity damage.
Once it has started, the cavity will continue to grow each time it is exposed to the acids from food bacteria. Know also that plaque actually traps the acids underneath it so that they are constantly eating away at the tooth, boring a hole toward the nerve. Once a cavity reaches a nerve, you will feel a lot of pain accompanied by headaches and may have trouble sleeping.
It’s important to note that we have a whole host of good bacteria in our mouths that serve many purposes and work for our benefit. However, when bacteria from foods we eat turns to plaque and calculus, it is a slippery slope to gingivitis and periodontal disease. In advanced periodontal disease, bones in the jaw become eroded and suffer dangerous and permanent damage. Allowing bacteria to eat into the mouth in this way causes contamination in the bloodstream that can contribute to all kinds of negative health consequences such as stroke and heart disease.
Pregnant women who don’t get their cavities treated are putting their baby at risk for complications because of the toxins that are being released into their bloodstream.
Obviously, prevention and early detection are the best ways to deal with cavities so that you don’t have to suffer the ugly consequences of poor oral health later in life.
Symptoms of Cavities
- Visible holes or pits
- Pain when biting, chewing, or when drinking hot or cold beverages
- Bad breath
- Loose feeling tooth
- Bloody or swollen gums
- Pain when brushing and flossing
Unfortunately, you usually won’t notice any of the above symptoms when a cavity has just begun. Cavities often go unnoticed until they are large enough to be seen. For many people, they persist until pain and inflammation occur. By the time your breath is affected, your mouth has likely undergone fairly extensive damage.
It is important to consult your dentist right away if you suspect you may have a cavity. If you have thin enamel or eat a lot of sugar and/or high-acid foods, you are particularly vulnerable to cavities and should make sure to get regular checkups to catch them before they get too advanced.
The best cure for cavities is prevention. Keeping your teeth clean and healthy will help you to keep cavities at bay and avoid the expense, discomfort, and risks of not taking proper care of your teeth.
Prevention of Cavities
- Stay away from simple carbohydrates like white bread, white pasta, and white rice. These foods convert to sugar much more readily than complex carbohydrates.
- Brush as soon as you can after eating, especially if you have eaten something sticky. If you can’t brush, rinse with water or eat a piece of hard cheese if it is available. There are enzymes in cheeses, like cheddar, that help to neutralize the activity of bacteria in the mouth.
- Floss every single day.
- Get regular dental cleanings and fluoride treatments.
- Use an ADA approved mouthwash every day.
One of the most important things you can do for your health is to take good care of your mouth. Watch for the symptoms of cavity and take steps to keep your teeth from being compromised.