Cavities are holes in the teeth. They are created by harmful bacteria that eat away at the weakened tooth enamel. Cavities expose the soft tissues and nerves within the tooth. As a result, many patients with cavities are prone to tooth sensitivity and severe tooth infections. Additionally, cavities can limit nutrients and make it difficult for patients to eat. Dr. Nicholas Gardner treats cavities in his Gouverneur, NY office with root canals and dental fillings. He uses these treatments to restore the comfort and function of his patient’s smiles.
How Bacteria Create Cavities
The mouth contains harmless bacteria. However, if food debris is left on the teeth and gums, common bacteria in the mouth are more prone to feeding on this debris. Bacteria feed on carbohydrates like sugars and starch. They create digestive acids that break these components down. The digestive acids can eat away at the tooth enamel and create plaque and calculus deposits on the teeth and gums. Bacteria deposits can be difficult to remove once they harden, which is why it is important to visit the dentist for routine cleanings. If the deposits are left on the teeth and gums, bacteria are more likely to form holes in the tooth enamel.
Treating and Preventing Cavities
Root canal treatment is the best way to preserve the natural smile. A root canal removes the infection from within the tooth, while a dental filling preserves the tooth structure. Before treatment, Dr. Gardner numbs the tooth for painless treatment. During a root canal, Dr. Gardner makes a small hole in the tooth to remove the infected dental pulp. The pulp is made up of blood vessels, cells, and nerves that cause pain to patients when infected. Then, Dr. Gardner cleans the tooth chamber and fills the tooth. Dr. Gardner will typically choose white fillings to seal the tooth, as metal fillings can contain traces of mercury. White fillings also blend in with the shade of the natural smile.
A good oral hygiene routine, as well as regular dental appointments, keep harmful bacteria at bay. Patients can floss before they brush their teeth to remove food debris between their teeth. Then, they can easily clean the spaces between each tooth. At regular dental appointments, our dental hygienists use specialized tools to remove bacteria buildup on the teeth and gums. We recommend that patients visit once or twice a year for the best results possible. We may recommend more regular visits if we find that you have chronic problems.
Request a Dental Consultation
Do you have tooth pain or holes in your teeth? Call our dental team for a root canal or dental filling today. If you are a new patient, please call (315) 203-1772. Current patients may call (315) 287-7900. Feel free to schedule a dental appointment with Dr. Gardner on our website. We look forward to seeing you at your next dental visit. If you have any questions or concerns, please let Dr. Gardner or a member of his team know at your next dental appointment.