A tooth cavity is a sign of tooth decay or caries, where a permanent hole develops in the surface of your tooth. You may develop a cavity if you fail to clean your teeth frequently and thoroughly, or if you frequently snack in between meals. Sipping on sugary drinks is another common cause of tooth decay. Tooth decay most commonly affects children and teenagers and older adults, but anyone with teeth can get a cavity. Without treatment, cavities will grow larger, eventually causing severe infection, toothache and even tooth loss.
What are the symptoms of tooth decay?
Initially, a cavity may not cause any symptoms, but as it gets larger you may experience tooth sensitivity and especially when eating or drinking something hot or cold or sweet or sour. You might even be able to see a visible hole or pit in a tooth, or it could look as if the tooth is stained brown or black. Larger cavities can cause toothache or pain when you bite down.
Tooth decay is just one reason why regular dental check-ups and cleans are so important. We can examine your teeth for any lesions or cavities and can treat them before they become larger, restoring and protecting your teeth against further decay.