Wedgewood Dental

5 Things to Know About Cavities: A Patient's Guide

5 Things to Know About Cavities: A Patient's Guide

Cavities are a common dental issue that affects people of all ages. Even though we brush our teeth from a young age, cavities can still occur. In this guide, we’ll explore five things to know about cavities, so you can help prevent them from forming.

1. Bacteria causes decay

There are hundreds of different types of bacteria present inside the mouth. Some types are helpful, enabling us to start the digestion process when we chew food, and protect our teeth and gums. Other types of bacteria are not good for us. Whenever we eat or drink, saliva mixed with food creates a coating of plaque on our teeth. Bad bacteria feed on the starches and sugars within this plaque, and produce acid. Without proper management, this acid eats into tooth enamel, creating decay and cavities.

2. Cavities can be repaired!

If you do get a cavity, it’s not the end of the world. A dentist should be able to clean the decay and repair the hole in your tooth quickly and with minimal discomfort. The recovery time for a filling is also minimal, and it should not disrupt your usual activities. As soon as you suspect a cavity, see a dental professional as soon as possible to avoid more complicated problems.

3. Neglecting cavities can lead to infection

If you have a cavity, bacteria will be able to enter deeper into your tooth, eventually reaching the pulp. This can bring painful toothache as the tooth becomes infected. Without treatment, you may lose the tooth altogether. Along with practicing good oral hygiene, cavities and infection can also be prevented by visiting a dentist regularly, who will be able to monitor your teeth and fix signs of decay before they become problems.

4. Dental infections can be dangerous

If your root canal becomes infected, or if an abscess forms in your gum, it could have serious implications for your health. The infection could spread to the soft tissues in the mouth, and even your jawbone. If you are concerned about a possible infection in your gum or teeth, seek the help of a dental professional straight away to avoid more serious complications.

5. Cavities can be prevented

The good news is that the majority of decay and cavities in teeth can be prevented, provided you follow an effective dental hygiene routine. This includes using a toothpaste containing fluoride and brushing teeth at least twice per day. Daily flossing is also essential for cleaning debris and plaque that gather between the teeth. Mouthwash is also helpful in cleaning those hard-to-reach places in the mouth.

Another way to prevent cavities is to keep up with your regular dental appointments. Often, this can stop problems in their tracks and prevent the need for fillings and more invasive treatments.

Getting help & advice

If you are looking for more advice, or need help with dental issues such as cavities, our team is here to help. From hygiene to dental care planning, our experts can help you achieve optimal oral health and give you a smile to be proud of. Contact your dentist in Rolla today.


713 Salem Avenue Suite A, Rolla MO 65401

Office Hours

MON 7:30 am - 3:30 pm

TUE Closed

WED - THU 7:30 am - 3:30 pm

FRI - SUN Closed

Get in Touch


Phone: (573) 368-7325


1116 S. Main Street, Salem MO 65560

Office Hours

MON Closed

TUE 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

WED - THU Closed

FRI 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

SAT - SUN Closed

Get in Touch


Phone: (573) 729-7701