Harlow Dental at Steele Creek
A Great Dentist

How can I have a cavity if my tooth doesn't hurt?

Woman Smiling | dentist steele creek charlotte ncIf you have a cavity but you don’t feel anything, this is actually good news. Once you start feeling pain from tooth decay, the decay has reached the tender interior of your tooth, known as the pulp. In this case, you might need a root canal and a crown rather than just a filling.

It is more common to develop cavities in the back teeth. Molars are full of pits and grooves that make it easy for plaque to settle in.

How does a cavity form?

When the plaque sits there, it can begin the process of developing a cavity in that tooth. The tooth enamel starts to get eaten away by acids produced by the bacteria in the plaque. Once the damage reaches the inner layer of the tooth, decay progression goes much quicker. This is when you will start to have tooth sensitivity because the pulp of the tooth has been infected.

How will you identify a cavity?

Your dentist will check for tooth decay by visually examining your teeth. If you have decay, an x-ray will reveal a small shadow in the area, which is useful for identifying cavities between teeth. An intraoral camera can also show a high-definition picture of the area so you can see for yourself that decay is present.

It’s best to get those small cavities filled before they progress further. Give us a call to get an exam!

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