Cavitations – A Common Yet Dangerous Dental Problem

20 Apr

jaw hurting cavitationCavitations are a problem many might not realize they have. These are considered to be very dangerous dental issues because they can’t be detected without the use of an X-ray. However, there are a few ways you can help to prevent this problem from occurring by keeping an eye out for possible silent signs.

What are Cavitations?

Cavitations are holes in the jaw or tooth caused by decay. This decay is usually because bacteria has gotten to the bone and has spread and infected the area causing not only the bone to be destroyed, but stop circulation in the area as well. These are often difficult to trace and can only really be found with the use of X-rays.

Types of Cavitations

Surprisingly, there are a few different types of cavitations. Below are some of the most common forms.


This type of cavitation is when the bone or tissues in an area die resulting in the area disintegrating.


Ischemic cavitations occur when the area lacks oxygen. If you have this type, your dentist will more than likely inject the area with ozone.


This type is when the area hasn’t fully been killed off with bacteria, but is infected.

What Causes Them?

While it’s not fully known what exactly causes cavitations, there are a few ideas behind what does.

Trauma to the Area

One possible cause of cavitations is trauma to the area. This could be caused by a broken tooth or jaw which might have negatively affected the area.

Trauma to the area can also be in the form of surgery. If you’ve had any type of procedure done on your face, like periodontal surgery, it could harbor bacteria if it didn’t heal correctly. This could end up inviting harmful bacteria to grow in the space left behind.

Bacteria Build-Up

Bacteria build-up is one of the main causes of cavitations. If not removed, the bacteria can end up multiplying quickly which can cause decay of both your teeth and jaw.


It’s not fully known if grinding can cause cavitations, but it could. This is often because severe grinding can create pressure on the bone which could irritate it.

Signs and Symptoms

There are a few signs and symptoms of this dental problem you can look out for.

Sinus Problems

Sometimes, cavitations can give you sinus problems. This is due to the area having tight pressure and the tissue around your sinuses being affected by the infected area.

Facial Pain

If you have facial pain, like tender areas on your jaw, it could be a sign of this dental issue. This is especially so if you sometimes have shooting pain in your face.


Toothaches are yet another sign of cavitations. They are caused because the bone and tissue around a tooth are dying which can cause sensitivity and pain in it.

How to Fix Them

Thankfully, your dentist can work to fix any cavitation problems you might be having. First, they’ll take an X-ray of the area to see the full extent of the problem. Then, they’ll work to remove the dead tissue that is causing problems by scraping the area free from bacteria and dead bone fragments.

However, if your problem is a little more serious, they’ll more than likely recommend surgery so they can fully remove the area and possibly replace it with prosthetic pieces.

It might be a little scary at first to find out you have a massive dental problem, but it doesn’t have to be. Cavitations can be quickly removed and healed with the help of your dentist who can create a treatment planned designed solely for you.

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