Azarko Dental Group Blog

Is Tooth Decay Visible to the Naked Eye?

Many people come to the Azarko Dental Group Edmonton dental clinic because they are experiencing tooth pain associated with tooth decay. In order to determine whether or not a patient is suffering from tooth decay, our dentists first perform a visual inspection. Many times, tooth decay is visible to the naked eye, especially to the naked eye of an experienced dentist.

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A dentist is typically looking out for discolouration on the surface of the tooth, as well as visible holes and enamel damage. Sometimes, however, tooth decay happens in the more difficult-to-see spaces between the teeth. In this case, your Edmonton dentist can perform a serious of x-rays to get a better look.

Because tooth decay is not always obvious to the naked eye - and especially to the untrained naked eye - you should not wait to see a dentist until you can spot discolouration yourself. Some other common signs of tooth decay include tooth pain, gum swelling, and a bad taste. If you experience any of these symptoms, even in the absence of any visible signs, you should definitely visit an Edmonton dental clinic.

What Causes Tooth Decay?

Tooth decay occurs when plaque bacteria damages the protective coating of enamel which surrounds a tooth, creating a cavity. The bacteria can then enter inside of the tooth, causing a painful and dangerous infection. If left untreated, tooth decay can result in tooth loss.

Plaque bacteria is able to dissolve tooth enamel because it produces acid as a by-product when it metabolizes sugar. Consuming sugary and starchy foods and drinks provides bacteria with the perfect source of fuel for producing more acid attacks. Additionally, not practicing good oral hygiene and regularly brushing and flossing your teeth allows the acid to remain on your teeth for longer, giving it more time to cause damage to tooth enamel.

How is Tooth Decay Treated?

Thankfully, Edmonton dentists have a variety of different strategies for treating tooth decay, depending on how progressed the tooth decay is. In its early stages, tooth decay can be fixed with a filling. Your dentist will remove the decay, drill a small hole, and fill the hole with a tooth-coloured resin.

A tooth that has become too badly damaged to support a filling can usually be fixed and have its shape restored with a crown. If the infection has reached the root of a tooth, then a root canal will be needed before the tooth is sealed off with a crown. However, when a tooth is damaged beyond repair, it will have to be extracted and replaced with a bridge or an implant.

Don't wait to visit an Edmonton dental clinic if you are experiencing tooth pain or other signs of tooth decay. If the tooth decay is caught early, then you likely won't need a tooth extraction. Protect your smile by booking an appointment at the Azarko Dental Group clinic today.

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14938 Stony Plain Rd.
Edmonton, AB T5P 3X8

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