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How much do you know about cavities? Dr. John Theriot and our team invite you to learn more about cavities today with these FAQs:

What are cavities?
Cavities are holes that develop in the tooth enamel, the protective layer that surrounds the teeth. They are also known as dental caries and tooth decay.

How does a cavity develop?
Plaque–the bacteria that gathers on the surface of youth teeth–creates tooth decay when it’s not removed from your teeth. The food you eat contains sugars that create enamel-attacking acids, weakening the tooth enamel.

What can increase the risk of tooth decay?
Poor oral hygiene, a diet rich in sugar, and the existence of dry mouth can all increase your risk of tooth decay.

What are some of the problems caused by cavities?
Untreated cavities will continue to spread and destroy the structure of the teeth, until they infect the vulnerable pulp tissue that is inside teeth, resulting in a tooth abscess. If the tooth decay becomes too severe, we may need to extract the tooth.

How can tooth decay be diagnosed?
To search your smile for decay, our dentist uses a dental tool to probe your mouth, looking for signs that indicate the existence of tooth decay, such as soft spots in the teeth. Dental X-rays can also reveal if a tooth has developed a dental cary.

How is a cavity treated?
If the cavity has not yet developed beyond the early stages, meaning the hole hasn’t reached the inner tooth, good oral hygiene may be enough to reverse the decay. However, a fully developed cavity means our team will have to remove the damaged areas and restore the tooth with a dental filling.

How can I prevent cavities?
To keep tooth decay at bay, you much take care of your smile. Healthy habits such as maintaining good oral hygiene, receiving regular professional dental cleanings, and eating a healthy diet can all reduce your risk of tooth decay. Additional helpful practices including rinsing with mouthwash after brushing your teeth, receiving dental sealants, and drinking fluoridated water.

Please feel free to contact Theriot Family Dental Care at 337-347-7210 if you have any questions about addressing cavities in Lafayette, Louisiana.