It’s been months now that I have had a cavity. I think it is pretty deep in the tooth and the tooth is partially chipped. I don’t have dental insurance, so I have been putting it off for far too long. It used to ache and hurt when I first noticed it. But now it doesn’t hurt anymore. Did it go away? I do everything I can to keep it as clean as possible. I’ve even been rinsing with mouthwash daily. Did this heal it? If not, in my research, I saw that the the tooth will fall out eventually. Do you know how long that will take to happen? It’s one on my back molar teeth. Is there anything I need to do in the meantime, until it falls out?
-Jake in Ohio
Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, a cavity does not heal on its own. You mentioned that you didn’t have dental insurance, which has kept you away from the dentist. This is also unfortunate, because this could have been taken care of quite easily and economically early on.
It would still be in your best interest to see a dentist to see if the tooth is salvageable. Since you no longer have any discomfort, the cavity may have reached the inside pulp of the tooth. If that is the case, you may be dealing with a possible tooth infection. This can be quite serious if it is just left alone. The infection can spread to other parts of your body and cause serious complications. But the good news is, the root canal treatment may be able to save the tooth.
Waiting for it to fall out really isn’t the best plan. If you are young, you may be dealing with some painful, annoying consequences for letting it go down the road. Your teeth may shift around and your chewing efficiency may be compromised. You may also have bone loss to deal with. There are many affordable dentists around that will work with you on payments or make a plan to phase out treatment over time, so it fits in your budget.
In the future, keeping up with regular checkups and exams is far more economical and better for your overall oral health, than never going in.
This post is sponsored by Cleveland dentist Hylan Dental Care.