Did you know that 50% of first-graders and 80% of 17-year-olds have tooth cavities?
Tooth cavities are generally the result of plaque build-up and can affect anyone, regardless of age. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that constantly forms on the teeth. When plaque comes in contact with sugar and starch, it causes bacteria to produce an acid that attacks and erodes tooth enamel. As the tooth enamel breaks down and wears away, the tooth becomes susceptible to the formation of dental cavities. Good oral hygiene and routine dental care are the keys to minimizing your risk of tooth decay and can provide the foundation for lifelong dental health.
How to Prevent Tooth Cavities:
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste (if over the age of 2)
- Floss daily – cavities frequently form between teeth
- Maintain a healthy diet, limiting sugary snacks and soda
- Visit the dentist regularly for teeth cleanings and exams
When patients have a greater risk for tooth decay due to a medical condition, medication, or genetics, we offer personalized dental care and oral hygiene advice for keeping your smile as healthy as possible between visits.
Treatment For Tooth Cavities
Dr. Trinkner offers a range of general dentistry services to treat any stage of tooth decay. Tooth-colored dental fillings are often used to treat teeth with early stages of tooth decay. Other options include inlays, onlays, and dental crowns. If tooth decay is extensive, a root canal may be necessary.
Visiting our Columbia dentist office twice a year for routine dental care provides the opportunity for Dr. Trinkner to spot developing tooth decay and other dental concerns in the early stages when a conservative treatment approach can be most effective.
Replace Your Old Fillings With a Cosmetic Tooth-colored Filling
Many patients have old, dark metal dental fillings that can begin to break down with age or cause them to hide their smiles.
We can replace dark, metal fillings with natural-looking cosmetic fillings that will be durable, comfortable, and brighten up your smile! Old damaged fillings can allow further tooth decay if left untreated over time.
Patients who have developed cavities, have damaged or decaying metal fillings, or who simply want to brighten up their smile can be offered several treatment options:
- Composite resin dental fillings: referred to as white fillings, this biocompatible resin material will be color-matched to your other teeth to blend in with your natural smile.
- Dental inlay: for patients with fillings that are degrading because of a damaged tooth, your dentist at Infinity Dental may suggest the use of a porcelain inlay for a more durable and comfortable repair. An inlay is designed to fit the inner contours of the tooth and fill any decayed areas.
- Dental onlay: similar to an inlay, the dental onlay is prepared in much the same way but is designed to cover the entire biting surface of a tooth that has a cavity or more severe damage.
- Dental crowns: Dr. Trinkner may recommend using a dental crown in cases where the structure of the tooth is significantly compromised by decay. Once the old filling is removed, the tooth is prepared for a crown that will fit over the tooth like a cap providing strength and durability.
Should a filling become loose or dislodged, contact us immediately. Dr. Trinkner will see you as soon as possible to reattach the filling and check to see if further decay has occurred within the tooth.