Many of us have ended up with a cavity or two in the past. Whether you notice it because you have increased sensitivity or your dentist picks up on it it before you do, it’s important that you have it treated right away so you don’t end up with a more serious problem. However, some dental cavities are more difficult to discover than others because they are between the teeth. These are called “interproximal cavities.” A dentist in Lansdale explains how you can tell whether or not you have one, as well as how they are treated.
How Can You Know If You Have an Interproximal Cavity?
Many times, patients don’t pick up on interproximal cavities right away because they are not easily seen. Usually, it becomes apparent when the patient begins to feel pain, which occurs when the cavity is deep enough where is penetrates the enamel and reaches the second layer of the tooth – the dentin. This part of the tooth is more sensitive, so when the decay reaches it, patients are likely to experience sensitivity and discomfort. The only way to know for certain that you have an interproximal cavity is by seeing a dentist. They will usually confirm this by using a bitewing x-ray.
How Are Interproximal Cavities Treated?
The treatment for interproximal cavities depends on the severity of the decay. Chances are that your dentist will treat it with one of the following:
- Recalcification: When decay is caught early enough, your dentist may be able to recalcifiy it with fluoride gel.
- Filling: This is one of the most common treatments for a cavity. This involves your dentist drilling into your tooth in order to clear away decay before filling it with a tooth-colored material.
- Root Canal: When decay is deep, your dentist may need to perform and root canal in order to save your tooth. Your dentist will drill into the tooth, remove the pulp from the center, clean it out, and seal it off with a filling material.
- Dental Crown: If you have undergone a large filling or root canal, your dentist may cap your tooth with a natural looking cover in order to protect it from further damage.
- Extraction: When there are no other options and a tooth cannot be saved, your dentist will extract your tooth completely. You will be able to explore tooth replacement options in the future.
How Do You Prevent Interproximal Cavities?
In order to keep cavities from occurring, excellent oral hygiene is key. This includes brushing twice and flossing once each day as well as heading to your dentist for regular cleanings and checkups. This way, you can clean away food particles before they cause problems. Other helpful ways to prevent interproximal cavities include limiting your sugar intake and using a fluoridated mouthwash.
You don’t want to be spending more time in the dental chair than you need to due to cavities between the teeth. Be sure to take good oral hygiene steps so your smile can stay strong and healthy.
About the Author
At Brookwood Dental Associates, you have a team of general dentists, periodontists, an endodontist, oral surgeon, and orthodontist so your family can get everything they need at one convenient location in Lansdale, PA. If you think you have an interproximal cavity, they would be happy to help you get some relief. For more information or to schedule an appointment, visit their website or call (215) 368-2424.