Do Cavities Hurt: How To Find Relief

May 15, 2024

Unfortunately, pain is not a reliable tool for discovering cavities. Let’s say they can be moody; at times, a tiny cavity can be fussy and cause throbbing pain while a large cavity remains quiet. Cavities are among the world’s top dental concerns.

You might not know you have a cavity until it’s time for your next dental visit. Therefore, people ask “Do cavities hurt?” Yes, they sometimes can, depending on their size and depth.

Do Cavities Always Hurt?

Not all cavities cause pain or discomfort. Sometimes, even a small cavity can hurt a lot, while a big cavity might not hurt at all. Cavities can also have no symptoms at all, which is why it’s important to see your dentist regularly. Following are some common signs of cavities besides pain:

  • Feeling sensitive when you eat sweet foods or drinks.
  • Having pain when you bite down.
  • Feeling sensitive to hot or cold temperatures.
  • Noticing a rough spot on your tooth.
  • Getting food stuck between your teeth or inside them.

Why Do Cavities Hurt More at Night?

Toothaches can feel worse at night because when we lie down, more blood flows to our heads, putting extra pressure on sensitive areas like our mouths. We are usually upright during the day, so we don’t feel the throbbing as strongly then.

At What Stage Does a Cavity Hurt?

Cavities start to form when bacteria break into the enamel to access the internal structure of the tooth. They invade the tooth in stages, and stage 3 is when they reach the dentin layer. At this stage, it’s an advanced cavity.

Is there a good part? Yes, the decay hasn’t reached the inner part of the tooth yet, but it might start hurting soon. Can you fix Stage 3? No, but if you’re lucky, you might not need a root canal.

Do Cavities Hurt When You Eat?

When cavities start, you might feel pain when you bite down on something hard, like candy. As they get worse, even soft foods can cause pain when you chew. And if they keep getting worse, you might feel constant tooth pain.

What Does a Cavity Look Like?

Sometimes, a cavity appears as a dark spot on your tooth, usually yellow, brown, or black. At first, it might just look like a stain or a small change in color. As the cavity gets worse, it gets bigger and darker. Eventually, it can take over most of the tooth.

Do Cavities Hurt to Get Filled?

Getting a cavity filled shouldn’t be painful because your dentist will give you medicine to numb the area. They might use a small needle to give you the medicine, but you shouldn’t feel much pain or discomfort. This is the outcome of the highly effective numbing agents.

Treatment for Cavities

Some cavity symptoms can be completely undetectable. Therefore, a dental visit can help. It is highly recommended to visit your dentist every six months. Following are some dental approaches for treating small and extended cavities:

  • Dental Fillings: The dentist cleans out the cavity and fills it with a safe material to keep bacteria out.
  • Root Canals: If the cavity has reached the pulp, a root canal can save it.
  • Crowns: Sometimes, the decay is too intense for a filling, so the dentist removes the damaged part and covers the tooth with a cap.
  • Antibiotics: If there’s a bad infection, the dentist might prescribe antibiotics. People with weak immune systems or who are getting certain medical treatments might also need them.
  • Orthodontic Care: Crooked teeth can increase the likelihood of cavities. Braces or other orthodontic treatments can help fix this.

Final Thoughts

Cavities happen when plaque, which is full of bacteria, stays on your teeth for a long time. But if you catch it early and clean your teeth well every day, you can stop the decay from getting worse.

Visit Dr. Allen Jahangiri at Noble Smile Family Dentistry. Our doctor of dental surgery is trained under the direction of some of the most renowned dentists and oral surgeons. Call us at (281) 394-2929 to book an appointment.

Dr. Allen Jahangiri

Dr. Allen Jahangiri

Dr. Allen Jahangiri, founder of Noble Smile family and cosmetic dentistry in Katy, Texas, and his team offer top-notch dental and aesthetic services to enhance your smile. Trained at the University of Texas, Health Science Center in San Antonio, Dr. Jahangiri learned from leading dentists and oral surgeons. After earning his DDS, he completed a residency to master advanced dental techniques. He provides a comprehensive range of services, including cosmetic, general, implant, pediatric dentistry, and oral surgery. Recognizing patient anxiety, he also specializes in sedation dentistry for a more comfortable experience.
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