Tooth decay starts when when your saliva breaks down the food and drinks into acids. If it is left around and in between teeth, the acid will eat into the enamel and cause decay. It is always best to eliminate decay as soon as possible. The earlier you remove it, the more tooth structure is saved and the stronger the tooth is, which improves the long term prognosis.
If treated when small, a simple filling usually will eliminate the problem.
As the decay gets larger it will undermine the enamel to the point that it cannot support a filling. When this happens a crown is best to surround the tooth to hold it together.
If the decay reaches the nerve, your only choices are to extract the tooth, or save it by doing a root canal before the crown placement. Although root canals and crowns can be costly, it is less expensive than replacing a missing tooth with an implant , bridge or partial . It is important to note that when extracting a tooth, they should be replaced within 6 weeks to a year at most. If left alone the teeth will drift and can cause problems to the remaining teeth, gums, bone and joints.
Check with our dentist to have an exam and video inspection of your teeth to determine if you have any decay and what is best for you.