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A dental cavity is a serious and dangerous dental issue. Unfortunately, many people don’t take cavities seriously. This can cause major problems. Oftentimes they do this because they don’t quite understand dental cavities and how they work. So, to help you know more about cavities, our dentist, Dr. Michael Hall, is happy to answer some frequently asked questions.

What causes a cavity?
The number one cause of cavities is dental plaque. Plaque is the white, sticky film that clings to the teeth and attacks the enamel. It usually forms when cavity-causing bacteria consume sugars and carbohydrates from the foods you eat and then turn them into acid plaque. If your teeth aren’t strong enough, cavities can form.

What are the ways to treat a cavity?
When a cavity is smaller and simpler, a dental filling can treat a cavity. If the cavity is more complex, a dental crown can replace the tooth enamel and restore the tooth. If the crown isn’t a viable option, root canal treatment is oftentimes necessary. This is needed when the decay has infected the internal pulp. If the root canal cannot help, tooth extraction is usually the best way to restore the oral health.

What happens if I don’t get a cavity treated quickly?
If you ignore a cavity, it continues to grow and spread. Like mentioned before, more intensive treatments are required the longer you wait to treat the cavity. Also, if you delay treatment, the cavity could also spread to other teeth, especially if the cavity is between two teeth.

If you have any questions or if you would like to know more about cavities in Bend, Oregon, please reach out to our dental team at Central Oregon Dental Center. When you contact us at 541-389-0300, we will be more than happy to help you.