How Long Does It Take for Cavities to Form?

No one wants to see cavities on their teeth. Cavities create dark marks and are typically characterized by tooth pain. They can also spell serious trouble for your oral health. Cavities can lead to infected root canals, and eventually, tooth loss. But cavities don’t just pop up overnight. Missing a single dentist appointment, or failing to brush your teeth once won’t create a cavity. Cavities take time to form. That means you have time to keep your teeth clean and healthy. It also means that the signs of decay take time to show themselves.

Cavities Typically Form Over the Course of Months or Years

Genetics play a huge role in the health of your teeth. The shape of your jaw and your proclivity for contracting cavities have a lot to do with your family history, so it’s hard to create a standard timeline for cavity formation. However, in general, cavities form over the course of months, or even years. Bacteria build up on the surfaces of your teeth. Those bacteria create acid as they metabolize food and grow. That acid is corrosive to your tooth enamel, and it will leave behind a hole eventually. By the time you notice the signs of a cavity, it’s too late to prevent.

Don’t Wait for Visible Signs to Clean Your Teeth

If you wait until you see a cavity on your teeth or you experience tooth pain, you’re too late. You’ll have to have the cavity treated by a dentist and filled. You should proactively clean your teeth and make regular appointments at your dentist’s office to prevent cavities from forming. Thoroughly brush the surfaces of your teeth at least twice a day, and floss between your teeth daily to remove food and bacteria. If you stay diligent about cleaning your teeth, you’ll drastically reduce the likelihood that you develop a cavity.

If You Notice the Signs of a Cavity, Treat it Right Away

Developing a cavity on your tooth isn’t the worst thing that can happen, in fact, the problem gets worse if you don’t treat the cavity. Failing to clean and fill a cavity can lead to infected root canals and even tooth loss. If you notice the signs of a cavity, make a dentist appointment right away. Cavities are typically characterized by toothaches and/or tooth sensitivity, brown or black staining in a concentrated area on the surface of your tooth, discomfort while eating, and visible holes. Taking action early reduces the severity of the problem.

Treat Cavities with a Tooth-Colored Filling at Flynn Dentistry

At Stubbs Family Dentistry, you’ll receive quality care that repairs your tooth after a cavity. Tooth-colored filling options are discreet and effective, making it impossible for others to recognize that you ever had a cavity. Schedule an appointment to treat your teeth at Stubbs Family Dentistry in West Allis, WI by calling 414-541-8250.