DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT OF TOOTH DECAY

Overview:

Tooth decay affects tooth in different stages but the stage of the decay determine the treatment modality, procedure and management . Therefore the right diagnosis is very essential.

However, not every tooth decay requires treatment but all decay do need maintenance which is good oral hygiene, regular visit to the dentist etc. The decays that do require treatment come in form of dental fillings fluoride application, crowning, veneer, onlay, inlay etc

Investigation

The investigation that is needed to make a diagnosis of tooth decay otherwise known as dental caries are as follows;

  • Periapical radiograph, radiograph showing 2 to 3 teeth on one film
  • Bitewing
  • Orthopantomogram, radiograph showing all the teeth and jaws in one film
  • Fibreoptic light
  • Dental explorer

Diagnosis

Tooth decay is diagnosed as follows;

  • Incipient caries,
  • Rampant caries
  • Recurrent caries
  • Arrested caries
  • Pit caries
  • Root caries
  • Fissure caries
  • Interproximal caries

Treatment

Saliva play important role in the defense of the tooth because repairing tooth decay at the early stage { incipient caries}, however, this natural repair process is overwhelmed when the acid produced from sugary food consumed exceed rate of saliva production.

Moreover, there are procedures done in dental clinic either to assist the natural repair process or fix damaged or breached hard tooth surfaces. These include;

  • Professional fluoride application
  • Prescribing high strength fluoride toothpaste
  • Dental filling eg GIC, composite etc.
  • Dental crowns
  • Dental inlay
  • Dental onlay
  • Dental veneer
  • Root canal therapy for tooth decay that is painful
  • Dental extraction for grossly tooth

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