6 signs of tooth decay

6 signs of tooth decay

One of the most common dental problems that people face is most definitely tooth decay. And this problem can affect both children and adults. Luckily, tooth decays is also the most easily preventable dental problems, with good oral hygiene. Today, we will be focusing on the top 6 signs of tooth decay and what can it be done to prevent them.

What is exactly tooth decay?

When there’s damage on the tooth surface (or tooth enamel as well dentists like to call it) tooth decay starts to form. The damage happens due to high concentration of acids produced by bacteria in your mouth.

Signs of tooth decay

Not every case is the same so each patient will display different signs of tooth decay. Many patients actually believe that their oral hygiene is good and that they shouldn’t have tooth decay problems. But in any case, these are the tops sights of tooth decay to look out for if you’re worried.

Swollen and bleeding gums

When our gums are swollen or we have undetected gum bleeding, our gums are usually to sensitive, easily irritated and sometimes even painful. Gum inflammation, or Gingivitis, occurs due to a bacterial infection and that is the most common cause of bleeding gums.

Many patients don’t even know that they have Gingivitis or bacteria buildup. And when that happens, the bacteria will start producing more and more acid, leading to tooth decay. So even if bleeding gums might not be a direct sight of tooth decay, it can potentially lead to it. If you notice that your gums are swollen or painful, make sure to schedule an appointment with your dentist.

Uncomfortable pressure as a sign of tooth decay

When you eat and you bite down on food, if you notice an uncomfortable pressure, or you notice some discomfort around your mouth, it might be a sign of tooth decay, meaning that your teeth aren’t as strong as they are supposed to be. Sometimes the pressure is occasional and lasts for a short time. However, if it lingers than it’s a clear sign that something isn’t right and that you need to pay a visit to your dentist.

Bad breath

Poor oral hygiene is one of the main causes of bad breath. Furthermore, bad breath doesn’t only indicate that you have poor dental habits. It can also be a sign of tooth decay and formation of cavities. Sometimes the bad breath lingers even after you’ve thoroughly brushed your teeth and rinsed it with mouthwash. If that happens, there’s a high possibility that you have tooth decay.

Tooth color changes can also be a sign of tooth decay

Our teeth need different vitamins and minerals in order to stay healthy and strong. Over time, tooth lose some of these minerals/vitamins which is normal. Luckily our body replenishes this through natural processed.

But, when our dental habits are poor and our diet is unbalanced, teeth can lose their mineral composition and start changing colors. Tooth discoloration can be a sign of tooth decay so if you notice it, make sure that you schedule a dental appointment with your dentist.

Unpleasant taste in your mouth

If our oral hygiene isn’t adequate enough, the build up plaque and bacteria can wreak havoc on not just our teeth, but also gums. They can make eating difficult and unpleasant, especially if they change the way food/drinks taste and your constantly have a bad taste in your mouth. This is usually a sign of a serious infection and is an early warning sign of tooth decay.

We hope that these sights and tips will help you identify whether you have tooth decay or not. If some (or more) of these signs are noticeable, the best course of action would be to pay a visit to your dentist so he could either confirm or rule out tooth decay and recommend the best treatment option for the problem that is actually causing it.


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Dr. Nguyen
Dr. Nguyen

Dr. Nguyen is committed to providing high-quality dentistry using state-of-the-art equipment to help you achieve improved oral health and the beautiful smile you deserve.

Dr. Nguyen has served on the Virginia Board of Dentistry and has many achievements such as: Invisalign Premier and Teen Provider, Pre-Fellow with Academy of General Dentistry, Graduate of Aesthetic Continuum, Engel Institute for Dental Implant Training, WaveOne Endodontic Training, HD President’s Club.

Dr. Nguyen enjoys spending time with his wife and three daughters, staying active in the gym, and trying out new restaurants.  When he isn’t at work, you can find him playing basketball, tennis, football, or hiking.

“I want to make you feel right at home, exceed your expectations, and provide an amazing experience!”