Adults Get Cavities, Too: 6 Signs You Might Have One
When you think about cavities, you probably think of little kids who’ve eaten too much candy. But, people of any age can get cavities. That means adults, too.
Cavities are a common dental health issue, but most adults don’t know what they are or how to recognize the symptoms if you have one. Here are some useful tips on cavities – including what they are and how to spot ‘em.
What Are Cavities?
A cavity is a permanently damaged area of the tooth that causes tiny openings or holes to develop. Also referred to tooth decay, cavities can be caused by many things, including bacteria in your mouth, too much snacking, drinking too many sugary drinks, and not cleaning your teeth well. And, some physical health issues, like eating disorders and acid reflux, can increase your chances of getting a cavity.
Cavities are most common in your back teeth, or molars, which have many grooves and crannies that can collect food particles. They are harder to reach and harder to keep clean, causing plaque and bacteria to easily build up.
Left untreated, cavities can get bigger and impact deeper layers of your teeth. Regular dental visits and good brushing and flossing habits can help you ward off cavities.
Signs You Have a Cavity
The signs and symptoms of cavities can vary depending on the tooth’s location and how extensive it is. In the early stages, you may not experience any symptoms. As cavities grow, you may experience one of these six symptoms:
- Tooth sensitivity
- Mild to sharp pain when eating or drinking items that are sweet, hot, or cold
- Visible holes in your teeth
- Brown, black, or white stains on the tooth’s surface
- Pain when you bite down
While regular dentist visits will help you avoid cavities or catch them early on, be sure to schedule a dentist appointment if you have any of these symptoms. Your dentist will ask you several questions about tooth pain, do x-rays, and perform an exam.
Depending on the cavity, your dentist will decide how to best treat it. Treatments can include fillings, crowns, and fluoride treatments. In extreme cases, you may need a root canal or the tooth will have to be extracted.
If you live in South Denver and you think you have a cavity, give us a call today. We’ll answer any questions that you have and get you in to see the dentist right away. Our office is in Centennial and is easy to reach from the Denver Tech Center, Greenwood Village, Highlands Ranch and Littleton.