If you’ve recently noticed some holes in your teeth, your first thought was probably that they were cavities. That might be true, but it’s also possible that the holes are something else entirely. Let’s look at a few of the alternate reasons why you might have holes in your teeth.
1. Pits and Fissures
You may not know it, but some of your teeth have always had holes in them! These holes are called pits and fissures, and they appear on the surface of your molars and premolars. These natural anatomical features can look like cavities to the untrained eye. This goes double for stained pits and fissures that might look like they’re developing discoloration from decay.
Be warned, though – even though pits and fissures are part of normal tooth anatomy, they’re also some of the most likely places for tooth decay to take root. There may be cavities inside your pits and fissures, some of which you may not be able to see without special tools. If you’re worried about this, book a dental scam and have your dentist check your teeth for you.
2. Tooth Wear
When your teeth make contact with each other, they may wear away some of the enamel on the affected surfaces. This can create small holes in your teeth, especially in places where the cusps of one tooth make contact with the other. These holes are known as wear facets.
Everyone experiences some tooth wear while eating and speaking. In most cases, however, it isn’t noticeable. People who clench or grind their teeth (a habit called bruxism) often experience accelerated tooth wear. These folks, as well as older people, may develop more obvious wear facets.
3. Acid Erosion
Acid erosion occurs when teeth are exposed to strong acids (such as those in citrus fruits, sodas, and tomato sauce) too frequently. These acids wear away the enamel they touch, sometimes creating clear divots in the surface of the teeth.
Cupping on the cusps of the molars is one of the most common presentations of acid erosion. This means that the small peaks that normally rise off these teeth wear down and eventually turn into valleys instead. If your back teeth all have small holes in the corners of their biting surface, this might be why.
Worried About Cavities? It’s Time for a Check-Up
While having holes in your teeth doesn’t always mean you have cavities, it’s impossible for a layperson to identify cavities from sight alone. Even dentists need tools like x-rays and probes to be sure that a tooth is healthy.
If you’ve noticed holes in your teeth that your dentist hasn’t specifically told you aren’t cavities, don’t assume that they’re harmless. Contact Coscarella Dentistry for a check-up appointment to get those holes inspected by a professional. We’ll examine your teeth, let you know if there are any problems with them, and schedule the appropriate treatment. Stop worrying about potential cavities and let us put your mind at ease.