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Tooth Decay Symptoms

I have decay under a tooth filling. What should I do?

recurrent caries
Learn more about recurrent caries.

Decay under an existing filling is known as secondary tooth decay or recurrent caries. Like initial tooth decay, secondary tooth decay may be a symptom of another (sometimes greater) problem. Secondary tooth decay is one of the most common dental diagnoses. The treatment depends on the extent of the decay, and the type/size of the existing dental restoration. Common treatment options are discussed in detail in the “Diagnoses” section of this site.

Can tooth decay be a symptom of another condition?

Tooth decay, also called dental caries, or cavities, is among the most common illnesses affecting man. It is the most commonly treated infection of the teeth, and is described in detail in the “Diagnoses” section of ToothIQ.com, along with common treatment options and related diagnoses.

Caries can also be a symptom of other conditions, which is why it is listed separately under the “Symptoms” tab. For example, persons with chronic dry mouth (xerostomia) may develop cavities in their teeth, due to a lack of saliva production, an important natural defense against decay. Caries can be a sign of chronic drug use, which can dry out the mouth and lead to poor oral hygiene. Tooth decay can also be a sign of neglect and improper care of the mouth.

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Author: Thomas J. Greany, D.D.S. / Editor: Ken Lambrecht

This page was last updated on November 27, 2017.

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