One of the top priorities of your dentist in Douglasville is to prevent dental problems from occurring in the first place. However, there’s one condition that affects more than 90% of adults over the age of 20 – cavities. Treating cavities is usually quick and easy, especially if they’re caught early. This is one reason why it’s so important to see your dentist every six months. In between appointments, it’s also important to be able to recognize the signs of a cavity so you can seek treatment sooner rather than later.
1. Hot & Cold Sensitivity
Cavities are a result of weakened tooth enamel, allowing the nerves and roots of a tooth to become exposed. This can cause increased sensitivity when eating or drinking something hot or cold. Someone who has a cavity may experience that sudden surge of pain that shoots through a tooth when the inner workings of the tooth come in contact with the temperature extremes.
2. Sweet Sensitivity
Similar to hot and cold tooth sensitivity, another common complaint of those with a cavity is sensitivity to sweets. Your tooth may hurt briefly after biting into a piece of candy or chocolate bar, then the pain will most likely subside. However, even if the pain goes away quickly, you should still consider seeing your dentist in Douglasville if this remains consistent whenever eating sweets.
Some people have tiny white spots on their teeth that formed during childhood. These are typically nothing to worry about. However, if you notice a new white speckle, or even worse, a dark brown, gray, or black area on a tooth, it may be caused by decay. There are other potential explanations for tooth discoloration so it is important to get it checked out sooner rather than later.
A cavity is essentially an area of decay in the tooth. Decay shows itself as a pit or a small hole. In the early stages of cavity development, this pitting may not be noticeable with the naked eye. But your dentist in Douglasville would be able to see this through dental x-rays or an exam. Now, if you do happen to see a hole in your tooth, you should schedule an appointment as soon as you can. This may be a sign of a large cavity that may require a dental crown restoration or it could be a symptom of an old filling falling out. Either way, it’s important to have it treated quickly.
The most common sign of a cavity is a persistent toothache. This pain can seem to come on suddenly or you may notice it after eating. The pain may also get worse when chewing or biting down. It’s important to remember that any pain in your mouth is usually a sign that something isn’t right, and you should get to your dentist for a checkup.
Knowing what to look out for is one of the best ways to make sure you catch and treat a cavity in the earliest stages. If you notice any of these signs of a cavity, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with your dentist in Douglasville today.
Oral health is a crucial part of your overall health, and it’s important to see your dentist in Douglasville at least every six months to maintain a healthy mouth and healthy body. However, we understand that there are some things that can keep a patient from seeing us as often as they should. If it’s been a couple of months, years, or even decades since you’ve seen your dentist, you’re not alone, and we’re here to help.
What to Expect
Your visit to a dentist for a long time may be intimidating, but the best thing you can do is prepare yourself for what to expect.
- Exam – Every patient that visits us will receive a comprehensive oral exam. This means that we will take a gentle look inside your mouth to look for any signs of decay, gum disease, or other problems.
- X-rays – No matter how long it’s been since a patient has seen us, we will take x-rays so we can get a closer look at what’s happening beneath the surface of what’s visible to the naked eye.
- Review of Oral Health – During your exam, we encourage you to review your oral health with your dentist in Douglasville. If you have concerns, pain, are grinding your teeth, or want to talk about enhancing your smile through cosmetic dentistry, now is the time to share that information.
- Review of Overall Health – You will need to complete a health history form prior to your visit. Make sure to be honest about any medications you’re taking or health problems you have. Believe it or not, a lot of health problems can impact your oral health, so it’s important for your dentist to know this information.
How To Prepare for Your Appointment
Knowing what to expect at your appointment is important, but it’s also important to prepare yourself for the visit. Try to schedule your appointment for a time that’s convenient for you and during a day when you have limited chances for other stressors. Also, it’s not uncommon for patients who haven’t visited in a while to need more treatment, such as a few fillings. Understanding this before you’re in the dental chair can help keep you relaxed during your exam. If you have dental anxiety, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Make sure you mention this during scheduling and during your appointment. Also, take the following steps to help reduce anxiety:
- Avoid caffeine prior to your appointment
- Bring your phone and headphones and ask if you can listen to music during your appointment
- Take deep, slow breaths to remain relaxed
- Never hesitate to use hand signals to let your dental team know you need a break
There are a number of reasons why patients put off visiting their dentist in Douglasville. Sometimes it’s due to fear, or maybe life is just too busy and you forget. No matter what your reason is, we promise to care for you in a kind and understanding environment without judgment. Schedule an appointment with us today!