How Does The Doctor Detect Cavities?

Only about 1-2% of the population is immune to dental caries. This means that there is a good chance you will develop a cavity at some point in your life. How does the doctor detect cavities? With the right tools the doctor can identify a problem in the earliest stages, improving the health of your smile and helping you avoid serious oral health complications.

What Causes a Cavity?

If the purpose of our tooth enamel is to protect our teeth, how does decay occur? Cavities form when the enamel erodes or weakens, allowing bacteria to reach the dentin below and cause decay to occur. A variety of factors can lead to the onset of decay, including:

  • Not brushing/floss enough or properly
  • Consuming drinks/foods high in sugar and other starches
  • Drinks with a high acidity
  • Chips or fractures in the tooth

What are the Most Common Symptoms?

How do you know if you have a cavity? In the earliest stages the patient may notice tooth sensitivity, especially to hot or cold food/drinks. Eventually, the decay can lead to a persistent toothache. If you have sensitivity or discomfort that doesn’t subside after a day or two then you should see the dentist. Identifying the problem and treating it can reduce the risk of an infection or possibly the eventual loss of the tooth.

How Does the Doctor Detect a Cavity?

The doctor will perform an exam to look for indicators of a cavity. Using the DIAGNOdent laser system, the doctor can actually identify cavities in the earliest possible stages, treating the issue before the patient experiences discomfort. The doctor can also recommend digital x-rays and intraoral cameras to obtain a precise diagnosis of your smile issues. If you have any questions about identifying treating tooth decay then contact our office today.