Stefanie Sunnes, D.M.D.
General Dentist located in Houston, TX.
Serving Sharpstown, Bellaire, and the greater Southwest Houston area
Cavities are one of the most common dental issues men, women, and children face. Because Stefanie Sunnes, DMD of Alegria Dental Care wants you to have a healthy and beautiful smile, she provides preventive dental care and cutting-edge cavity treatments. If you think you have a cavity or already have a painful tooth, schedule your evaluation at this state-of-the-art dental practice in Houston. Book your appointment through the online scheduling feature, or call the office.
Cavities Q & A
What causes cavities?
When plaque and tartar build up on your teeth, the bacterial chemical reaction starts breaking down tooth enamel. This weakens enamel, allowing small holes or pockets to form. As bacteria burrow deep down into your teeth, cavities — also called dental caries — start to form. Cavities can stem from:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Chronic dry mouth
- Inadequate fluoride intake
- Regularly consuming high-carb or high-sugar foods and drinks
It isn’t always known why some men and women are just more prone to developing cavities than others. But your genetic makeup could play a role, since certain genetic traits could increase your risk of having tooth decay.
How are cavities treated?
Treating cavities involves removing decay and then filling in the hole. Before getting started, Dr. Sunnes gets updated images of your affected tooth to ensure your decay hasn’t reached your root — which could require a root canal. She thoroughly numbs your treatment area, so you won’t have to worry about feeling any pain or discomfort.
After gently drilling through the decay and cleaning out the opening, she uses a tooth-colored composite bonding material to fill in the hole. Once she reshapes your tooth, you won’t be able to tell that you had a filling, as the filling material blends in seamlessly with your teeth.
For severe cavities that could weaken the structural integrity of your tooth, Dr. Sunnes might suggest placing a crown over the affected tooth instead of getting a large filling. Crowns can help keep your tooth strong, while minimizing your risk of future decay in larger openings.
Can I prevent cavities?
It isn’t always possible to prevent every single cavity, especially if cavities just seem to run in your family. But you can do several things to minimize your risk of future decay. One of the best things you can do is schedule routine exams and cleanings with Dr. Sunnes every six months.
These visits help her detect early warning signs of cavities, so you can get treatment before the decay worsens. Plus, professional cleanings are essential for removing stuck-on plaque and tartar that you can’t get rid of at home.
During your routine exams, Dr. Sunnes counsels you on proper oral health care at home. By showing you how to thoroughly brush and floss, and talking with you about foods and drinks to avoid, Dr. Sunnes can help reduce your risk of future cavities.
Before your cavity gets worse, schedule an exam at Alegria Dental Care. You can either use the online scheduler to book or call the clinic.