How Cavities Can Lead to Tooth Loss
When people are missing teeth, they know they know that they can come to our Los Algodones dental practice for advanced treatments. We offer dental implants to support crowns, bridges, and dentures, as well as other state-of-the-art treatments that can restore your smile.
Before visit our Baja California practice, patients often reach out to us asking how cavities and advanced tooth decay can lead to the loss of a tooth. Let's consider the basics right now, and then cover your treatment options.
What Causes Cavities?
Cavities are caused by the bacteria that naturally occurs in a person's mouth. This bacteria feeds on food particles that get caught between the teeth, creating acidity in the process. This eats into the tooth structure, causes the decay of the layers of the tooth's structure.
Why Does Advanced Tooth Decay Lead to Tooth Loss?
Initially, tooth decay effects the tooth enamel, which is the topmost layer of the tooth. As the decay progresses, it can affect the dentin (a lower layer of the tooth structure) and eventually infect the dental pulp at the center of a tooth. Tooth decay at various stages can lead to the loss of a tooth because of structural issues, or tooth damage so serious that it necessitates extraction to prevent more serious wellness issues.
Weakening of the Teeth
When a tooth is affected by decay, its overall strength and stability is negatively impacted. When biting or chewing with a decayed tooth, it's possible for the stress on the tooth to result in a serious fracture. This can lead to a broken tooth, which can be very painful. When a tooth cannot be restored or saved, the best option may be extraction.
Potential Root Canal Infection
As noted above, in the center of every tooth is a soft tissue known as dental pulp. Comprised of connective tissue, nerve endings, and blood vessels, the dental pulp was at one time essential for the proper formation of the tooth. When the pulp becomes infected, this can be very painful. If a tooth cannot be saved through endodontic therapy, the best option for treatment is the extraction of the tooth to alleviate pain and to prevent spread of the infection.
Options for Treating Tooth Decay
If you suffer from tooth decay, there are many options for restoring the damaged tooth. These include the following:
- Dental fillings
- Dental crowns
The extent of the tooth decay will determine the ideal restoration to use.
Treatments for Tooth Loss
If you wind up missing a tooth or multiple teeth as a result of tooth decay, there are different options to help restore the appearance of your smile as well as your overall dental health.
Removable dental bridges or dentures may be recommended for people who are missing a few teeth or many teeth. In addition, implant dentistry may be recommended to help anchor crowns, a bridge, or a denture in place.
During the consultation process, we can go over the right option for you given the circumstances that you face.
Tips for Cavity Prevention
When it comes to preventing cavities, the old advice is still the best:
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day
- Floss your teeth at least once a night
- Eat a healthy and well-balanced diet
- Avoid smoking and use of chewing tobacco
- Visit your dentist twice a year for regular checkups
Learn More About Your Dental Care Options
For more information about your many options for advanced dental care treatment, be sure to contact our advanced dental care center today. We look forward to your visit and discussing these matters with you in much greater detail.