To Fill or Not to Fill: Can I Wait 6 Months to Address a Cavity?

To Fill or Not to Fill: Can I Wait 6 Months to Address a Cavity?

August 1, 2023

Cavities are small holes that form on teeth surfaces due to the work of plaque and bacteria. Unlike bones, teeth cannot self-repair when decayed or damaged. So, cavities will deepen and enlarge if left untreated, causing several issues. Therefore, it is crucial to visit a dentist near you for treatment. Read on to learn if you can wait six months before addressing a cavity.

How Cavities Develop and Progress Over Time

When you eat, food particles remain in the mouth. Oral bacteria combine with the food debris creating plaque. Plaque forms on the teeth surfaces and can be removed by flossing and brushing. However, without proper oral hygiene, plaque accumulates and begins affecting the enamel.

Acids in plaque wear down the enamel, and demineralization occurs. You will notice early signs of decay, such as small, white, chalky spots on your tooth. If the decay is left untreated, it destroys the enamel causing cavities to form.

Later, bacteria and plaque reach the layer below the enamel deepening the cavity. Symptoms of decay in this stage include teeth sensitivity and dark brown spots on teeth. Lack of treatment causes the cavity to reach the deepest layer of the tooth, called the pulp.

Once the tissues in the pulp are infected, you will experience toothache, gum swelling and sensitivity to pressure. In addition, you may develop dental and periapical abscesses. These are pus pockets that cause intense pain in the face and jaw. Untreated abscesses spread to the rest of the mouth, brain and bloodstream, causing severe problems.

Can I Wait Six Months to Fill a Cavity?

You may wait six months before visiting a dentist near you to treat cavities with fillings. However, waiting for so many months allows the decay to progress. As a result, you will develop chewing difficulties and experience intense discomfort. In addition, the structure of the tooth is compromised, and the risk of health complications increases.

Once the cavity enlarges and deepens, you will require a more significant filing to treat it. As a result, the tooth will become prone to damage. If the cavity reaches the dental pulp, you will need root canal therapy which is more costly and invasive. Waiting too long can cause tooth loss. Missing teeth affect your smile, dental function and facial appearance.

Recommendations of Dental Professionals

When you have a cavity, dental professionals recommend getting it treated right away. They offer ideal treatments to ensure the hole does not worsen or cause discomfort. For example, the dentist in the Colony, TX, performs fluoride treatments to reverse early cavities. They also prevent the progression of small cavities by applying dental sealants on teeth.

Tips to Delay the Progression of Decay

Although it is prudent to see a dentist immediately if you have a cavity, this may not always be possible. For example, the lockdown during COVID-19 prevented many people from accessing dental care. Lack of finances, dental phobia and location can also prevent you from getting cavity treatment right away.

Below are tips to help delay the progression of decay until you can see a dentist.

  1. Use fluoride-filled toothpaste and mouthwash to remineralize and strengthen your teeth’s enamel.
  2. Maintain proper oral hygiene to eliminate bacteria that cause the advancement of cavities. Brush at least twice daily. Also, rinse your mouth often using antibacterial mouthwash and floss once every day.
  3. Reduce the number of sugary foods and drinks you consume. Sugar increases plaque, acids and bacteria, contributing to deeper and broader cavities.
  4. Consume foods with Vitamin D because it helps absorb calcium and phosphate. As a result, your teeth become less prone to decay damage.
  5. Chew sugar-free gum after meals or take sugary drinks to increase saliva production. Saliva raises the pH of plaque, flushes debris and reduces bacteria preventing further decay.


Your teeth cannot regenerate when you have a cavity. Instead, the cavity will become more profound and cause irreversible damage to teeth. So, you should contact a dentist for treatment when you have a cavity.

The dental professionals at Main Dentistry provide various cavity treatment options. For example, they offer fluoride treatments, dental fillings, tooth crowns, root canals, and onlays and inlays. Schedule an appointment with us for cavity treatment.

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