Cavities may seem like harmless spots on our teeth. But, they can turn into big problems without treatment. You may be tempted to ignore cavities, especially if you aren’t in a lot of pain. However, the consequences of waiting for treatment can be much more serious than you think. If you notice a cavity, you should make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.
In the beginning stages of a cavity, they can be difficult to notice. They often start small. Also, you may not even feel any pain. However, cavities won’t remain small or long. What may look minor on the surface can silently worsen beneath the enamel.
There are some early symptoms that can indicate you have a cavity. Even before you develop pain, you may see discoloration on your teeth. You may notice a spot that is black or brown in color. Additionally, white spots can indicate tooth decay as well. Next, you may feel increased sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures. This is because the decay is working its way through your enamel.
Without treatment, the cavity will only grow larger and deeper. This allows bacteria to travel further into your tooth. Untreated cavities are a breeding ground for bacteria. As a result, bacteria will grow and thrive. Furthermore, an untreated cavity will lead to infection. Infection from cavities can lead to very painful abscesses. An abscess is a pocket of pus that needs immediate attention.
Cavities can compromise the foundation of your tooth. This means that cavities can lead to tooth mobility or loose teeth. With advanced tooth decay, you may even lose a tooth. Some teeth may fall out due to extreme decay. Or, your dentist may need to extract your tooth. Regardless, losing a tooth will impact your bite and your smile.
The longer you go without treatment, the worse the consequences will be. In fact, the decay can spread to your other teeth. Ignoring one cavity may result in a domino effect of decay across your teeth.
Side Effects of Untreated Cavities
One of the first areas that receive damage with cavities is your enamel. Cavities weaken the enamel, which is the protective coating of your teeth. Weakened enamel can increase your risk of broken or fractured teeth. Untreated cavities can lead to enamel erosion, exposing deeper layers of your tooth.
As cavities worsen, you may feel more intense sensitivity and discomfort. What started as mild discomfort can grow to severe pain. It can feel sharp or a constant throb. Additionally, advanced cavities can reach the nerves in your tooth. This can cause intense pain that needs immediate attention.
While cavities can spread to other teeth, they can cause more damage. The infection can spread into other teeth and affect other areas of your mouth. Severe tooth decay can lead to infections in the soft tissues of the gums. Furthermore, infections in your mouth can spread to other areas of your body. Infection can move through your bloodstream, creating a significant health risk.
Therefore, you are better off treating cavities as soon as you see the signs.