Fill holes in teeth?

  1. How important is it to fill 'small holes'-claimed by the dentist in teeth? Should I wait until they become bigger in the next check up (in the hope that they don't) or should I fill them immediately?

    I brush twice a day. Once before breakfast and once 40min after dinner. Should my first brush be after breakfast? Should I brush immediately after dinner?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. DaveC426913

    DaveC426913 16,128
    Gold Member

    Whatever suits your fancy. You can do it now and prevent cavities, or you can risk cavities and do it later. I have some gaps in my teeth that the doc filled years ago. No cavities (or worse) there.
     
  4. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    Getting cavities filled when they are small is the best option so that they don't becaome large cavities, which can cause infection and result in tooth and or bone loss. Just remember that fillings will eventuially need to be replaced, and every time they are replaced, the dentist has to drill a bigger hole.
     
  5. Are the 'holes' I am referring to called 'cavities'? If so than I already have them.
     
  6. Monique

    Monique 4,700
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    There is ACT mouthwash that can strenghten weak spots in your enamel (and is thus good to use weekly), but it entirely depends on the extend of the damage whether you can revert it. Your dentist is the best to judge, so follow his advice.
     
  7. Do you eat anything after dinner? If not, then ask yourself why you need that second brush in the morning if you have not eaten anything since the last brush. Of course, you might have missed something since the last one and the time you brush your teeth is entirely up to you. I can only tell you what I do, which is to brush after breakfast. In my opinion, it is not so much when one brushes, but how one does it and not to forget, ones eating habits.
     
  8. DaveC426913

    DaveC426913 16,128
    Gold Member

    I'm not sure. I have natural places on the insides of my incisors that will collect stuff even with brushing and flossing. They are large enough to feel with a fingernail. They will encourage cavities to form. My doctor filled them as a preventative measure.

    Cavities are areas where tooth has weakened and will continue to get worse because they collect stuff. Brushing will help, but you're fighting an uphill battle.

    Why don't you see your dentist?
     
  9. Monique

    Monique 4,700
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    It IS important when you brush, the best is to brush after every meal, at least twice a day and before going to bed.

    After you eat something, plaque will build up on your teeth, bacteria that will grow in the plaque, make acids that will damage your enamel and thus create cavities.
     
  10. In the 8 hours of nonactivity during sleep, a lot of bacteria can do damage to the teeth. Would it be more than had I been awake? I normally wake up feeling very dirty in my teeth (i.e. need a brush).
     
  11. To treat my holes, the dentist said that I would need a filling (those silver material that cover the damaged tooth). Is that how you would treat a cavity? If so than my hole is probably a cavity.
     
  12. Monique

    Monique 4,700
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    During the day you continually refresh your mouth with saliva that helps maintain a healthy environment, during your sleep you don't have this and thus the bacteria have a chance to proliferate and the acids to build up. Your saliva contains many components that combat cavities, people with reduced saliva production are at a higher risk of developing them.
     
  13. DaveC426913

    DaveC426913 16,128
    Gold Member

    Yes.

    If you don't, it could eat down to your root. No fun.
     
  14. So a cavity is a technical name for a hole? I have 4 holes all at the back and on the bottom set of my teeth, which starts at the top and descends downwards in each tooth. Why are holes more likely to occur at the bottom set of teeth? Could gravity have anything to do with it - the bacteria are at a lower energetic state living at the bottom set of teeth?

    Does holes usually occur at the back where the tooth are larger and thicker? If so why?
     
  15. Monique

    Monique 4,700
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Yes
    That doesn't make any sense, starts at the top and descends downward?
    Probably because you didn't brush your lower-back teeth properly, that's a reason dentists take out wisdom teeth if they break through: they are hard to brush and are thus likely to get cavities.
     
  16. What I mean is, the cavity on each tooth is not on the side nor on the bottom but on top and descends downwards.


    That is strange I seem to brush my lower-back more than my upper-back. It's a more natural action to brush the lower-back than the upper-back wouldn't you say? For one thing, when brushing high you are expanding more energy because you are at a slightly higher gravitational potential.


    What about just waiting until a cavity forms than take it out. There is a chance no cavity forms.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2007
  17. DaveC426913

    DaveC426913 16,128
    Gold Member

    I do not believe this is true. Wisdom teeth are removed routinely because our jaw is too small to hold all those teeth, and wisdom teeth frequently get impacted. Removing them as soon as they begin causing trouble is routine. I do not believe the removal of wisdom teeth has anything to do with cavities.
     
  18. Monique

    Monique 4,700
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    That is what my dentist told me, an erupted wisdom teeth can cause decay, cavities is probably a too specific term. According to the following website: http://www.nobledentist.com.au/education/wisdom_teeth.php

    Why Remove Wisdom Teeth?

    Wisdom teeth generally cause problems when they erupt partially through the gum.

    Below are the most common reasons for removing wisdom teeth.

    1. Tooth decay

    Saliva, bacteria and food particles can collect around an impacted wisdom tooth, causing it, or the next tooth to decay. It is very difficult to remove such decay. Pain and infection will usually follow.

    2. Gum infection

    When a wisdom tooth is partially erupted, food and bacteria collect under the gum causing a local infection. This may result in bad breath, pain, swelling and the inability to open your mouth fully. The infection can spread to involve the cheek and neck. Once the initial episode occurs, each subsequent attack becomes more frequent and more severe.

    3. Pressure pain

    Pain may also come from the pressure of the erupting wisdom tooth against other teeth. In some cases this pressure may cause the erosion of these teeth.

    4. Orthodontic reasons

    Many younger patients have had prolonged orthodontic treatment to straighten teeth. Wisdom teeth may cause movement of teeth particularly the front teeth when they try to erupt. This will compromise the orthodontic result.

    5. Prosthetic reasons

    Patients who are to have dentures constructed should have any wisdom tooth removed. If a wisdom tooth erupts beneath a denture it will cause severe irritation and if removed, the patient will need to have a new denture constructed as the shape of the gum will have changed.

    6. Cyst formation

    A cyst (fluid filled sac) can develop from the soft tissue around an impacted wisdom tooth. Cysts cause bone destruction, jaw expansion and displacement or damage to nearby teeth. The removal of the tooth and cyst is necessary to prevent further bone loss. Tumors may develop within these cysts or the jaw may fracture spontaneously if the cyst grows very large.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2007
  19. DaveC426913

    DaveC426913 16,128
    Gold Member

    Right. This is what I was getting at. Wisdom teeth are only removed if they don't come in properly. Not coming in properly leads to complications, including cavities, as you're mentioned.

    Your post seemed to be saying that wisdom teeth are removed simply because "being hard to brush, they are prone to cavities".
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share a link to this question via email, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?