Improving Your Dental Care

Signs You Have A Cavity And Need General Dentistry

A cavity is a section of decay in the mouth caused by plaque. Plaque is a sticky substance that forms on your tooth enamel thanks to the presence of germs and is one of the many reasons you brush and floss your teeth on the regular. When plaque is left on the tooth too long, cavities can develop and destroy tooth enamel and dentin, getting into the soft tissue of the tooth. Plaque is hard to remove and is best treated by general dentistry specialists.

Left untreated, a cavity can destroy an entire tooth, causing enough tissue and nerve damage to effectively kill a tooth or cause an infection serious enough that gum tissue and even jaw bone is affected. A simple cavity should be treated by your dentist, and it's up to you to look for signs you have a cavity in the first place. Here are signs you have a cavity and are in need of general dentistry.

You have any type of tooth sensitivity

One of the signs of a more serious cavity is the presence of tooth sensitivity. Tooth sensitivity is caused by a cavity exposing your tender tooth or nerve tissue, which makes your tooth feel a sharp twang or stabbing pain when air hits the nerve or other pressure is placed on the area. A cavity often forms on the top of the tooth where grooves and hard-to-clean areas are present, so if your tooth is sensitive in these areas, see your general dentistry specialist for treatment.

You have colored spots in your tooth

While many cavities are dark-colored in nature, they come in a variety of colors. Basically, the darker a cavity is in color, the older the dental decay is. A young or new cavity is usually white or light yellow in nature, while darker cavities, or those that are deeper into the enamel and dentin of the tooth, are colored more light green to a gray or even black color. The depth and health of your tooth enamel can also affect the color of a cavity, so if you have any colored spots in your tooth that weren't there before or are changing color, see your general dentistry specialist for care.

General dentistry practitioners are specialists who help you achieve healthier teeth and overall better oral health. When you care for your teeth properly, you do your part to ensure your oral health remains in check. See a dentist for all your oral health needs, from a minor cavity to having a tooth pulled.

To learn more, reach out to a local dentist.