General dentists are the go-to dental professional to see when a cavity arises. They are trained and equipped to offer an array of treatment options, all of which restore the tooth so that it can be healthy and strong.
Cavity treatment options
Outlined below are a few ways that a general dentist may treat a cavity. Reviewing the following procedures may be helpful to individuals who are suffering from cavities.
The most common type of procedure performed by a general dentist for cavity treatment is a dental filling placement. Dental fillings do exactly as they sound by filling the empty cavity that is left as a result of the removal of the infected parts of the tooth. The procedure does not usually extend past 45 minutes.
To start, the general dentist will remove the infected parts of the tooth, clean the cavity out, and then fill the cavity with a chosen material. The most commonly used materials are silver amalgam, composite resin, or porcelain.
In some cases of a cavity, a general dentist may recommend a dental crown. Similarly, to a dental filling procedure, the infected areas of the tooth will be removed. However, the difference is with a dental crown treatment, the tooth likely has more damage to it, which is why the entire tooth has to be capped.
Dental crown placement is done in two procedures. The first involves placement of a temporary one, and then a few weeks later the permanent one is placed.
The most aggressive way to treat a cavity, aside from extraction is to undergo a root canal. General dentists recommend root canals as the last possible option as it involves complete removal of the roots of the infected tooth. The procedure does involve multiple steps, over two different appointments. The first appointment involves the removal of all infected areas of the tooth, as well as the roots, which are where the nerves live. The tooth is then filled with a rubber material that seals the empty space off. A temporary crown is placed and later replaced by the general dentist with a permanent crown.
Other things to know
It is good to know that general dentists may recommend one procedure first and then later have to perform another. In some scenarios, the infected areas of the tooth may require multiple procedures. For example, it is possible to have a dental filling done and then later need a root canal.
X-rays are taken to determine the size of the infection, which will then determine what type of procedure is needed. However, in some cases, the x-ray may not show everything, which is where another procedure may be required.
Find out more from a general dentist
When curious about how a cavity may be treated, it is best to consult directly with a general dentist. An evaluation can be done to determine what treatment route is most appropriate as each cavity is different. To learn more about cavities and how they are resolved, reach out today. Additionally, we can get you scheduled for an appointment with the general dentist.
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