Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Tooth Cavity Overview

Another name for Tooth Cavity is Dental Caries.

What are dental caries?
Teeth are coated with a hard substance, called enamel. Dental caries, or cavities, are holes that form in teeth when the enamel is damaged. Left untreated, dental caries can result in loss of teeth. Almost everyone is affected by dental caries.

What are the symptoms of dental caries?
Symptoms of dental caries may include pits or cavities in the surface of the teeth and dental pain that is often triggered by chewing or exposure to cold. Other symptoms include red or swollen gums and pus where the tooth meets the gum.

How does the doctor treat dental caries?
Treatment for dental caries may include antiseptic mouthwash, dental fillings, and antibiotics.

Continue to Tooth Cavity Incidence

Last Updated: Jul 29, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Tooth Cavity References
  1. Brook I. Microbiology and management of endodontic infections in children. J Clin Pediatr Dent. 2003 Fall;28(1):13-7. [14604136]
  2. Douglass AB, Douglass JM. Common dental emergencies. Am Fam Physician. 2003 Feb 1;67(3):511-6. [12588073]
  3. Preshaw PM. Antibiotics in the treatment of periodontitis. Dent Update. 2004 Oct;31(8):448-50, 453-4, 456. [15554049]
  4. Roberts A. Bacteria in the mouth. Dent Update. 2005 Apr;32(3):134-6, 139-40, 142. [15881508]
  5. Wayne DB, Trajtenberg CP, Hyman DJ. Tooth and periodontal disease: a review for the primary-care physician. South Med J. 2001 Sep;94(9):925-32. [11592756]
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