Most individuals experience at least one cavity at some point in their lifetimes. Dentists can treat this dental problem with fillings.
However, if you do not take care of your dental work, it is possible to get a cavity underneath a dental filling. Dr. Clement Monroe and Dr. Kamron Monroe, dentists practicing in Pinehurst, NC, respond to frequently asked questions regarding recurrent tooth decay.
What Is Recurrent Decay?
A cavity is a form of tooth decay that leaves a hole in the surface of your tooth. Dentists remove the damaged parts of the tooth and fill the hole with composite resin to seal the area, protecting it from further damage.
However, if a dental filling becomes worn or falls out of place, the area becomes vulnerable and at risk of forming another cavity. Dental professionals refer to this condition as recurrent decay.
What Treatment Can I Expect?
Treatment for recurrent decay is similar to that of an initial cavity. Your dentist will remove the worn dental filling to access the underlying damage in the affected tooth. They can provide a local anesthetic for optimal patient comfort during this process.
Then your dentist will drill away the decay and place another filling to shield the resulting hole. Extensive damage may require treatment with a dental crown. If decay has reached the pulp of the tooth, your dentist might recommend root canal therapy.
Can I Prevent Cavities Forming Under Dental Fillings?
To prevent recurrent decay, you should protect your dental fillings and other dental work. Dentists recommend avoiding biting down on hard items, such as ice or fingernails. You should also let your dentist know if you have a habit of grinding your teeth, as this can damage your fillings.
You can lower your risk of forming cavities in general by practicing good oral hygiene. This involves brushing your teeth twice per day, flossing daily, and visiting your dentist for routine exams and cleanings every six months.
Learn More from your Dentist in Pinehurst, NC
Drs. Monroe and Monroe Implant and General Dentistry offer dental fillings and other general dental treatments to patients in Pinehurst, NC. Our practice also specializes in cosmetic and restorative dentistry, including tooth replacement solutions. To schedule a consultation or appointment with our team, contact us online or reach our office by phone at 910.295.4242.