Cavities are common, and chances are you've already had a few treated in your lifetime. When teeth begin to decay, a cavity is formed in your tooth, and when you have this treated, your dentist will remove the decay, and insert a filling to prevent any further decay in that area. Cavities can form in several areas of a tooth, including the chewing surface, between the teeth, or on the root of the teeth.
Even when you visit your dentist regularly, tooth decay can still happen. However, if your cavities go untreated, the decay can worsen drastically. While regular cavities often don't cause pain, progressed tooth decay can often cause serious toothaches and headaches. When the tooth decay reaches the inner area of your tooth, called the pulp chamber, you may experience severe pain, and an abscess can occur. This infection requires a much more in-depth treatment.
Cavities vs. Root Canals
While dental fillings are typically a fast and easy process, if you let your tooth decay progress, you will likely need a root canal on the tooth. A root canal is the process of removing the nerves from a tooth, removing any infection, filling the tooth, and then placing a crown. This treatment can often be performed pain-free by experienced dentist, but it's common to experience pain from the decay before treatment occurs.
Root canals take much longer to perform, and the treatment is significantly more expensive than a typical filling.
However, in some cases a root canal is no longer possible if the decay has severely progressed throughout the tooth. In this case, removal may be the only option for your affected area. Again full tooth removal and replacement is a significant process with a larger price tag than either a filling or a root canal.
Letting tooth decay progress, simply put, often causes pain and a much higher cost of treatment in long run. Visiting your dentist for those bi-yearly cleanings can make a huge difference in how much you end up spending at the dentist. When you're able to fill cavities and keep your mouth clean and healthy, you simply will not require as much treatment or time in the dental chair in the long run.
Schedule a Cleaning at our Concord NH Dental Office
If you have any questions about cavities, or if you are experiencing a toothache, don't hesitate to contact our office today for more information. We can schedule an appointment to visit our experienced dentist, and we'll help you get back on track for great oral health!