Black woman in a burgundy sweater cringes in pain and touches her cheek due to a toothache

3 Signs You May Have Tooth Decay

July 22, 2023 8:44 am

Do you avoid chewing on one side of your mouth or wince when you drink a chilled beverage because of tooth pain? Tooth decay occurs when acids produced by bacteria weaken and break down the enamel, the outer protective layer of teeth. Here are three signs that may indicate you have tooth decay:

  1. Tooth Sensitivity
  2. One of the initial signs of tooth decay is temporary tooth sensitivity and discomfort when consuming hot, cold, sweet, or acidic foods and beverages. The erosion of tooth enamel exposes the underlying dentin, which contains nerve endings that can trigger sensitivity. Ignoring tooth sensitivity may lead to worse pain and difficulty eating or drinking certain foods.

  3. Toothache
  4. A persistent toothache usually means decay has extended through the enamel and dentin layers to reach the sensitive inner tooth pulp, where the nerves and blood vessels are located. This can cause severe pain to pressure and even swelling around the affected tooth.

  5. Tooth Discoloration
  6. Tooth discoloration can be another sign of tooth decay. White, brown, or black spots or stains on your teeth can be due to the presence of decay. These discolorations occur when the acids produced by bacteria in the mouth weaken and eat away at the tooth enamel. Discoloration can be particularly noticeable on the front teeth but can affect any tooth.

Treatment for Tooth Decay

If you notice tooth sensitivity, discoloration, and pain, it’s best to consult a dentist promptly! Your dentist will thoroughly check your teeth and gums for dental disease. Once you have a diagnosis, prompt treatment can begin to help you enjoy eating, drinking, and speaking pain-free.

Identifying and treating tooth decay early on is essential for maintaining good oral health. Please schedule an appointment at Alma Dental Care if you are experiencing any issues with your teeth and gums in Petaluma, CA. We offer comprehensive dental care, including restorative treatments, that can improve the health of your smile!

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