Why Would My Dentist Decide to “Watch” My Cavity Rather Than Fill It Right Away?


When we see patients in our office, we always do a thorough exam of their teeth to check for cavities. Cavities are caused by tooth decay due to food particles left that have eaten away at the teeth. Filling those cavities stops the corrosion of the teeth to preserve their integrity. However, not all patients need a dental filling when a cavity begins to form. Some cavities can wait, and here are the reasons.

Teeth Can Repair Themselves

Sometimes, a cavity can begin and resolve itself, especially if the person brushes, flosses, and uses fluoride mouth wash regularly. Keeping the cavity free from food particles that lead to germs that decay the tooth is the best way to boost the tooth’s ability to repair itself. It’s always better for a tooth to naturally repair itself because this keeps it stronger than doing work on it.

Dental Procedures Lessen the Integrity of Teeth

When a cavity is filled, it weakens the tooth. There’s more possibility for damage because the filling can fall out, crack, or there can be a small opening between the filling and tooth that can could lead to decay and then a root canal. It’s best to wait on filling a cavity to see if it becomes bigger than to rush into treating it.

Small Cavities Don’t Hurt You

The biggest problem with cavities is that they can cause pain over time. We don’t want you to be in pain, but small cavities can be harmless, so that’s why we keep an eye on them for you. Small cavities can remain small for years or even forever, as long as you take good care of them. Brushing, flossing and using fluoride mouth wash can keep small cavities from growing into big problems.

Why Some Dentists Choose to Fill Cavities Right Away

Some dentists will fill cavities as soon as they start because they can charge for those fillings. It’s not the best course of action for patients because as mentioned above – it affects the integrity of their teeth. Watching cavities to see if they worsen saves patients from the inconvenience of dental procedures and the cost of them because most of them never turn into problems that need be solved.

If you’re unsure whether your cavities need to be filled or you would like a second opinion, please contact Bridge Creek Dental. We would be happy to provide you with a thorough dental exam to give you our recommendation on if you need to have any of your cavities filled. Give us a call today for an appointment.

Share This:



  1. So question. My dentist told me I did not have any cavities but I think I definitely have one on the side my molar. I can see it. Or… it could be a dark spot but it feels like one. Anyway, if this is indeed a cavity can I just do a temporary at-home filling (the kind that you can buy at the store) so food doesnt get stuck there? Or is it worth waiting and asking about on my next appointment? I feel like this tooth (which was previosuly filled on the tops) is causing a bad breath problem.

Speak Your Mind