Tooth decay is probably one of the most common dental issues. This condition may worsen both oral and overall health. There are a number of reasons that may increase your risk of getting cavities. Fortunately, this condition is easily preventable and curable if you notice it in the early stage. To notice it at the beginning you need to know common symptoms of dental cavities.
Below you may find 5 common signs of tooth decay and some effective tips on how to prevent this unpleasant condition.
5 Signs That You May Have a Tooth Decay
1. Teeth sensitivity
Teeth sensitivity is one of the most common symptoms of dental caries. As the holes in your teeth become bigger, the dentin becomes exposed to external factors. Dentin is a part of your tooth that is more porous and sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. You may notice that one tooth becomes more sensitive than others and this may happen because of tooth decay.
Every time you drink something hot or cold you may notice discomfort or even sharp pain in one tooth. This is a sign that you have a cavity in this tooth.
2. Gums swelling
Tooth decay may appear anywhere on the surface of your tooth. When it appears near the gum line, the infection may affect your gums. This may contribute to gum swelling and even bleeding. The discomfort and bleeding may increase when you brush or floss your teeth. However, a gum infection like gingivitis has similar symptoms. Regardless of the cause of your gums bleeding, it is important to visit your dentist.
3. Tooth discoloration
At the beginning of dental caries, cavities may look like dark spots on the surface of the tooth. At first glance, these spots may look like simple staining from foods or drinks. You may even mistakenly assume this spot for a mild tooth discoloration. Over time, this staining becomes larger and develops into tooth decay. The spots will not necessarily be dark. Precarious spots may also be yellow and even white.
4. Bad breath
The main cause of tooth decay are bacteria that live and breed in your mouth. These bacteria start ruining your teeth creating holes in the enamel. As any living organism bacteria produce waste that may cause bad breath. In addition to bad breath, you may also experience an unpleasant taste in your mouth.
For this reason, if you notice that you permanently have bad breath then you need to contact your dentist. After the exam, your doctor will determine whether tooth decay causes your bad breath.
5. Dental pain and discomfort
Another common symptom of tooth decay is tooth pain. As holes become deeper it may expose the dentin and nerve. It may be extremely painful for you to bite and even chew foods. Some patients with tooth decay experience difficulties with brushing and flossing their teeth. Since teeth are sensitive- brushing may cause discomfort and even sharp pain.
If left untreated the infection may penetrate deeper and damage the pulp. The last stage of tooth decay is a tooth abscess when pus accumulates inside the teeth. An abscess is extremely painful and may even cause fever. As a result, tooth abscess may contribute to tooth loss.
Ways to Prevent Tooth Decay
To prevent dental cavities it is very important to visit your family dentist regularly and practice good oral hygiene. Thus you will decrease the risk of bacteria excessive accumulation. Avoid drinking and eating high sugary products since they promote bacteria breeding in your mouth. You also need to consume less acidic foods since acid weakens the enamel and makes it more vulnerable to bacteria. It is recommended to rinse your mouth with tap water after each meal to eliminate food that is stuck between the teeth.