How Are Cavities Treated?

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Woman holding a cupcake and a tooth, symbolizing cavity treatment near Birmingham
September 5, 2022

Is there a way to reverse cavities? Unfortunately, there is not. Once a cavity has reached your dentin, the only way to go is to treat them with dental fillings in Birmingham to prevent it from spreading.  

Usually, your dentist will remove the damaged area and apply a filling material to restore your tooth’s structure and function. However, a dental filling isn’t the only fix to a dental cavity. You should consult with your dentist to have your teeth checked to determine what treatment is ideal for your case.  

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What Are Your Cavity Treatment Options?  

What Are Cavities?

Cavities are damaged areas in your tooth’s enamel that lead to holes and small openings. Other names for cavities are caries and tooth decay. Many factors contribute to the development of cavities, such as consumption of sugary drinks, poor dental hygiene, oral bacteria, and frequent snacking. Anyone can get cavities, even infants.  

If cavities are left untreated, they will only get bigger and deeper, leading to complications such as severe tooth pain, tooth abscess (infection), and even tooth loss.  

On the upside, they are preventable. Your best defenses against cavities are practicing proper dental hygiene and regularly visiting your dentist for checkups and teeth cleanings.  

How Do Dentists Treat Cavities?

Cavities are usually discovered during an oral exam since your dentist will thoroughly check each tooth for signs of problems. The earlier you seek treatment, the higher the chances of reversing the decay and preventing it from becoming severe.    

If a cavity is allowed to progress, the treatment will be more extensive and expensive. The type of treatment you’ll get will depend on your current condition. Some of the examples of treatments for cavities are the following:  

  • Fluoride Treatments – Cavities that have just started can be reversed with fluoride treatments. Although you can get fluoride from tap water, mouth rinses, and certain toothpaste brands, they do not contain sufficient amounts of fluoride compared to the treatments given in dental offices. Fluoride treatments may come in different forms like varnish, foam, gel, and liquid.    
  • Dental Fillings – A dental filling placement is the standard treatment for mild to moderate cavities. You can choose from a wide range of materials like porcelain, composite resin, and amalgam. To help you decide what material to get, it helps to ask your dentist about the pros and cons of each type.  
  • Dental Crowns – When the decay has progressed to the point where it has already weakened your tooth, a dental crown is a probably treatment. A dental crown is a tooth-shaped cap customized to encase the visible part of the affected tooth.  

The decayed parts are removed, and some areas of your enamel are shaved down and drilled to make the dental crown fit. It can be made from various materials like porcelain-fused-to-metal, gold, resin, or porcelain.    

  • Root Canals – If the decay has penetrated your dental pulp, the only way to save your tooth is to perform root canal therapy. This treatment involves removing the decayed pulp, disinfecting the area, and replacing the pulp with gutta-percha.  
  • Tooth Extraction – For a severely decayed tooth that cannot be saved by root canal treatment, your dentist will have no choice but to perform a tooth extraction. If your tooth is removed, replace it with an artificial tooth to prevent further oral complications.  
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Do You Need Dental Fillings in Birmingham?

If you qualify for a dental filling, congratulations to you because it means you get to save your tooth. We strive to provide you with the best dental services at Church Family Dentistry. Our goal is to give you a comfortable and pleasant experience. Contact us today for an appointment.  



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