5 doctors weighed in:

What complications can occur with dental cavities? My brother never goes to the dentist and i'm worried he is developing cavities. Is it possible they will affect his overall health? If so, how? .

5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Gary Chapman
Dentistry - Orthodontics
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Tooth loss to death

Dental decay (cavities) can cause mild to severe complications.
Tooth pain , jaw pain, sinus pain. Tooth loss, loss of adjacent teeth as well. If an infection develops (an abcess), teeth can be lost. If an abcess occurs in an upper back tooth, it can drain to the cavernous sinus and lead to an infection in the brain, causing death if untreated. Procrastination will lead to more dollars spent.

In brief: Tooth loss to death

Dental decay (cavities) can cause mild to severe complications.
Tooth pain , jaw pain, sinus pain. Tooth loss, loss of adjacent teeth as well. If an infection develops (an abcess), teeth can be lost. If an abcess occurs in an upper back tooth, it can drain to the cavernous sinus and lead to an infection in the brain, causing death if untreated. Procrastination will lead to more dollars spent.
Dr. Gary Chapman
Dr. Gary Chapman
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1 comment
Dr. Kenneth Grossman
Dental infections can also spread to the mediastinum , or heart area. Yearly dental check ups are important!

In brief: Very sick, even die

An untreated cavity can get into the pulp or "nerve" of a tooth.
That allows mouth bacteria a place to grow and even penetrate into ones jaw bone. That infection can stay static, get into the blood stream and attack your organs or even your heart or you can get a swelling that can obstruct your airway and even make breathing impossible! affiliated with a hospital, i see patients like this weekly!

In brief: Very sick, even die

An untreated cavity can get into the pulp or "nerve" of a tooth.
That allows mouth bacteria a place to grow and even penetrate into ones jaw bone. That infection can stay static, get into the blood stream and attack your organs or even your heart or you can get a swelling that can obstruct your airway and even make breathing impossible! affiliated with a hospital, i see patients like this weekly!
Dr. I. Jay Freedman
Dr. I. Jay Freedman
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Dr. Stephanie McGann
Dentistry - Cosmetic

In brief: Dental

Dental diseases including tooth decay can affect a person's overall health.
Tooth decay can progress to the point where it can compromise the soft tissue in the center of the tooth. This tissue, called the pulp can become inflamed and infected. This infection can sometimes spread to the soft tissues of the cheek or throat causing serious infections. However, other health risks can come from the chronic low-grade infection of periodontal disease. This can have no symptoms and put an individuals health at risk. Patients with periodontal disease are more likely to have uncontrolled diabetes, more cardiac risks and increased risks of pneumonia. Periodontal disease can contribute to pre-term birth and low birth weight babies just to name a few concerns. Please talk to your brother and encourage him to see a local dentist.

In brief: Dental

Dental diseases including tooth decay can affect a person's overall health.
Tooth decay can progress to the point where it can compromise the soft tissue in the center of the tooth. This tissue, called the pulp can become inflamed and infected. This infection can sometimes spread to the soft tissues of the cheek or throat causing serious infections. However, other health risks can come from the chronic low-grade infection of periodontal disease. This can have no symptoms and put an individuals health at risk. Patients with periodontal disease are more likely to have uncontrolled diabetes, more cardiac risks and increased risks of pneumonia. Periodontal disease can contribute to pre-term birth and low birth weight babies just to name a few concerns. Please talk to your brother and encourage him to see a local dentist.
Dr. Stephanie McGann
Dr. Stephanie McGann
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Dr. Theron Baker
Dentistry

In brief: If

If a cavity goes untreated, your brother risks continued progression of the tooth decay necessitating a larger and larger filing.
If it gets too big he may need a crown to fix the problem. Additionally, as a cavity progresses it will approach the nerve inside the tooth and he can experience pain. When the nerve area becomes infected we will treat it with a root canal or removal of the tooth. An infected tooth can be very painful and in rare instances even life threatening. Something else to consider is his gum health. Without routine dental cleanings bacteria builds in the gums and causes inflammation. This is the body's immune system responding to that infection and has an effect on overall health.

In brief: If

If a cavity goes untreated, your brother risks continued progression of the tooth decay necessitating a larger and larger filing.
If it gets too big he may need a crown to fix the problem. Additionally, as a cavity progresses it will approach the nerve inside the tooth and he can experience pain. When the nerve area becomes infected we will treat it with a root canal or removal of the tooth. An infected tooth can be very painful and in rare instances even life threatening. Something else to consider is his gum health. Without routine dental cleanings bacteria builds in the gums and causes inflammation. This is the body's immune system responding to that infection and has an effect on overall health.
Dr. Theron Baker
Dr. Theron Baker
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