Tooth Problems

Tooth Problems and Their Causes

tooth problems

From tooth decay to dark teeth, there are a variety of tooth problems that people often encounter. And while most of these issues are monitored and treated accordingly by your dentist as your teeth grow and develop, other issues may come on quickly and require more immediate treatment than others.

Like most dental issues, the best way to prevent and minimize tooth problems is to brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss at least once a day, and have your teeth professionally cleaned every six months. With that being said, here's a look at some common tooth problems.

Tooth Decay

Most commonly known as cavities, tooth decay is permanent damage to your teeth that consist of tiny – to quite large – openings or holes in the enamel. They're often caused by a variety of factors, such as:

  • Excess bacteria in the mouth
  • Poor oral healthcare at home
  • Poor dietary habits (high sugar foods, highly acidic beverages, etc.)
  • Decreased saliva flow

Tooth decay is corrected by removing the decayed part of the tooth and the associated bacteria and filling the hole or opening with a restorative material. But if left untreated, tooth decay can spiral into painful toothaches, infection, and even tooth loss. The best way to prevent tooth decay is to practice good oral healthcare at home, see the dentist for cleanings as recommended, and consider using a fluoride mouthwash.

Tooth Pain and Sensitivity

Tooth pain can stem from a variety of causes. These can be something as simple and minor as having had recent dental work to something more major like tooth decay, a cracked tooth, or an exposed root surface. If the pain persists, you should definitely see your dentist immediately to have the issue diagnosed and treated.

Broken Teeth

Teeth can become cracked or broken for a variety of reasons, which can be very painful. If you've experienced a chipped, cracked, or broken tooth, it's important to seek immediate dental care.

Restorative treatments are used to fix decayed, broken, or chipped teeth. Depending on the severity of the situation, we may repair it with a bonded composite filling, an onlay, or crown. In more severe circumstances, a root canal and crown or tooth extraction may be necessary.

Dark Teeth

Teeth may appear dark or discolored for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Tobacco use
  • Dietary habits
  • Poor oral care
  • Medication
  • Genetics

Fortunately, our staff is equipped to restore darkened teeth to their natural color, and in many cases, much, much whiter. Preventing discolored teeth can be accomplished with some simple lifestyle changes and tooth whitening treatments.

Wisdom Teeth

It's estimated that up to 80 percent of all people have their wisdom teeth removed. Usually, this is simply because they don't fit into the mouth and can detrimentally impact the rest of your teeth. Dr. Smith will monitor wisdom teeth development through X-rays and make the call, usually in the late teenage years, on whether they should be extracted or not.

If you're concerned about a tooth problem, contact our office today at 803-359-6143 to set up an appointment. We offer friendly, yet professional service and have the experience and know-how to treat any tooth problem.