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If you want a top-notch smile, then you need to keep your teeth and gums in tip-top shape. Unfortunately, there are many things that threaten the smile each day, and one of those things is tooth decay, which is also known as a cavity. It’s best to prevent cavities as much as possible because they are one of the most dangerous dental issues in the world today. To help you know more about cavities, our dentist, Dr. Joseph Younger, is happy to answer these commonly asked questions:

What causes cavities?
There are two major causes of cavity development: acid and plaque. Acid tends to attack the tooth enamel and make it weak, making it vulnerable to cavity-causing bacteria. Plaque is a white, sticky film that is created when bacteria and food particles are left in the mouth to mix with your saliva. This plaque attacks the enamel and eats it away, causing cavities.

What happens if I ignore a cavity?
Your cavity will grow and spread. It can start in the outer layers of the enamel and then it can progress to the inner surfaces. It can then spread to the root of the tooth and even cause an infection in the gums. If it’s still not treated, it can spread to other teeth in the smile.

What are the treatments available for fixing cavities?
If a cavity is small, a dental filling can treat it. If a cavity is bigger, a dental inlay or onlay can fix it. If a cavity is even bigger, a dental crown can fix it. If the cavity has reached the deep inner surfaces and root of the tooth, a root canal treatment can help. If the cavity has compromised the entire tooth, tooth extraction is likely necessary.

If you have any questions or if you would like to know more about cavities in Arden, North Carolina, contact Arden Dental Group today. We also encourage you to call 828-684-9260 if you think you might have a cavity. It’s best to treat the problem right away. We look forward to helping you!