Tooth decay is one of the most common of all disorders, second only to the common cold. It usually occurs in children and young adults but can affect any person. It is a common cause of tooth loss in younger people.
There may be no symptoms. If symptoms occur, they may include:
- Tooth pain or achy feeling, particularly after sweet, hot, or cold foods and drinks
- Visible pits or holes in the teeth
- Signs and tests
Most cavities are discovered in the early stages during routine checkups. The surface of the tooth may be soft when probed with a sharp instrument. Pain may not be present until the advanced stages of tooth decay. Dental x-rays may show some cavities before they are visible to the eye.
Treatment can help prevent tooth damage from leading to cavities.
Treatment may involve:
- Root canals