Cavities

Vanguard and Achury Dental

General Dentistry located in Garden City, NY & Jackson Heights, NY

Did you know that tooth decay is the most common type of chronic disease among Americans of all ages? However, it’s largely preventable. At Vanguard and Achury Dental in Garden City, Long Island, and Jackson Heights, Queens, treating cavities is a central part of the practice. Camilo Achury, DDS, and Diva Puerta, DDS, take care of cavities in the early stages to prevent worsening decay up to and including tooth loss. When you’re ready to get started, schedule an appointment online or call either office in New York City.

Cavities Q & A

What are dental cavities?

Dental cavities, also known as dental caries, are small pits that form in the outermost layers of your teeth. They are a form of dental decay, and although, they are highly preventable, they remain a common problem among American children and adults. 

If you have one or more cavities you’re certainly not alone. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that as many as 91% of people between the ages of 20-64 have at least one cavity, and by the age of 65, as many as 96% will experience tooth decay. 

How do cavities form?

Bacteria are the primary cause of dental decay. When certain types of bacteria are present in your mouth they create a specific type of acid that breaks down your natural tooth enamel and the layer of dentin that lies beneath. 

Those bacteria build up in plaque, a sticky film that contains saliva, food particles, and other substances. A solid brushing and flossing routine can remove most traces of plaque, but there are areas of your teeth that are challenging to clean, including:

  • Between your teeth
  • Along your gum line
  • In the pits, cracks, or grooves of your back teeth
  • Around fillings or dental bridges

Your enamel also has tiny pores, and acid can seep in to attack your teeth from within. While cavities are initially too tiny to see with the human eye, they will grow larger if left untreated.

How does my dentist check for cavities?

Every time you come in for an exam and cleaning, your Vanguard and Achury Dental professional checks your teeth for signs of cavities. The DEXIS CariVu™ system allows the team to detect even the tiniest cracks and cavities. 

This patented technology uses near-infrared transillumination to detect cavities with zero radiation. That means your dental team can determine if you need a filling without having to use X-rays. 

There are certain scenarios where dental X-rays still offer meaningful insight into your tooth and bone structure, but this approach offers a safe and effective way of checking for cavities without X-rays. 

If you’d like to come in for a diagnostic exam and a thorough cleaning, call the office to check appointment availability. Online booking is also an option and allows you to schedule from the comfort of home on your own timeline.