Leaving a cavity untreated

Cavity's bacteria
Cavity's bacteria

What might happen if you leave a cavity in your mouth without treating it? Tooth decay is like an infection. It is made of harmful microscopic bugs that use sugar to attack teeth. With time this creates a little hole in a tooth, and if not repaired with a filling, the cavity continues to grow.

If a cavity is not treated it can destroy a good part of the tooth, making it hard to be rapaired with a conventional filling. If a lot of the tooth is gone, only a crown can fix it.

If the decay’s micro-organisms reach the pulp chamber, where the nerve and blood vessels are located, then the pulp becomes irritated and infected. This can eventually lead to an abscess which can be very painful. Only a root canal can fix a tooth when its pulp is infected, and a crown is then probably needed as a final restoration.

There are also situations where a tooth is so much destroyed by a cavity that nothing can be done to fix it, not even a root canal and a crown. In that case the tooth would sadly need to be extracted.

Full article: What Happens if You Don’t Treat a Cavity?
In French: Laisser une carie sans la traiter


9 thoughts on “Leaving a cavity untreated”

    1. Jolly, a cavity can grow slowly or rapidly. 18 months is a long time and I advise you to have it checked by your dentist. A small cavity needs a filling. A big cavity that reached the pulp chamber (nerve) might need root canal treatment. A cavity that has destroyed a good part of the tooth might need to be extracted. I don’t know at what stage your cavity is, but your dentist will tell you.

  1. hello. what is the main causes of pain in a tooth if theres tooth decay? is it true that there is a tiny microscopic worm inside the decayed tooth?

  2. Best thing to do with wisdom tooth cavities is this:


    dont let a dentist full em or crown em, you dont need wisdom teeth and they are too troublesome to leave in once decay is prominent..just get the suckers pulled out and youll never have to deal with em again. 😉 you also save a bit of dough too..

    1. Sometimes if the tooth is completely out, you only need a filling. But I agree that a root canal and a crown can be over-treatment for a wisdom tooth. Although I usually let the patient decide.

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