When a person goes to a family dentist in Rochester NY for a routine visit, the dentist will check the person's teeth for signs of decay and cavities. This is just one of the things that will be completed at this type of visit and there are several different ways a dentist does this. This is not something that is done though until the person's teeth have been cleaned by a hygienist. Professional teeth cleanings are part of routine preventative care for the teeth and this is something that will help prevent cavities in the future. Going to the dentist can be something you really do not want to do, but it is a good thing to do on a regular basis. These are some of the ways a dentist will find cavities in your mouth during your visit with a family dentist in Rochester NY. Learn more below. Finding Cavities Dentists do not like decay. Decay eats away at teeth and when dentist find this on a person's tooth, he or she will want to fix it. There are times when cavities are very easy to spot. They appear as black spots on a tooth and they usually form holes on the teeth. If a dentist can see a cavity, it means that the cavity is probably a decent size. With x-rays, a family dentist in Rochester NY will get a better look at what is happening to the teeth because the x-rays will show things that the dentist might not be able to see. X-rays will help the dentist find cavities that are stuck in between the teeth and they will help find small cavities that are just beginning to form. A dentist will tell you what is found and will tell you what needs to be done about this. Treating a Cavity The treatment used for a cavity will depend on the size of the decay and on the tooth the cavity is found on. Small cavities can usually be removed and filled in with composite material. If a tooth has already had a lot of fillings on it, this might not be an option. The material used for a filling will not stick to other fillings. If a dentist keeps adding fillings, they will probably end up falling out. When a family dentist in Rochester NY finds a tooth like this and it has another cavity on it, he or she is likely to suggest a different option to fix it. This option will involve the use of a dental crown. If this is the option that is used, the dentist will remove all of the old fillings and the new decay found. The dentist will shave this tooth down and will make impressions of it so that a crown can be created. A dental crown is an item that is placed over a tooth. This will protect what is left of the tooth and it may be the only way to save a tooth that is in this condition. Root Canal If the dentist finds that the decay has spread too far, a root canal may be necessary. This is a process that is similar to getting a filling, but it is a little more intense. The dentist will need to get inside the tooth to clean out the tooth pulp and infection, and a crown will then be made to fit over the tooth. A family dentist in Rochester NY will let you know that this process will require two visits. One visit is used to complete the root canal procedure, but the other is needed to install the permanent dental crown on this tooth.