Cavities that form between two teeth are referred to as interproximal cavities. The cause of interproximal cavities is the same as the cause of other dental cavities. They form in places where your tooth enamel has worn away from use, chipped, or cracked and bacteria has gotten into the inner dentin layer of the tooth. Once the bacteria get into the dentin, then decay starts and continues until the tooth is treated.

Interproximal cavities are a common problem that is easily treatable in all general dentistry offices. And, thankfully, this type of cavity has many successful treatment options for you to choose from. 

If you believe you may have interproximal cavities and are anxiously awaiting an appointment with your dentist, here's what you need to know about this common dental problem.

Symptoms of Interproximal Cavities

There are many different symptoms of interproximal cavities. The most common are problems with sensitivity when:

  • eating foods containing sugar
  • chewing hard foods
  • drinking cold beverages
  • drinking hot beverages

While these symptoms can be caused by many other dental problems, they will become more pronounced over time if not treated and are tell-tale signs you must seek dental treatment as soon as possible. Interproximal cavities that are found early have more treatment options available and saving the tooth is a lot easier than if you wait until the decay really takes hold.

Diagnosis of Interproximal Cavities

When you visit your dentist's office, their staff will take a series of dental x-rays. On the x-rays, your dentist will be able to see even the smallest areas of decay on the surface of your teeth.

If the x-rays show areas between your teeth with enamel loss and the beginning signs of decay in the dentin layer, then you will be diagnosed with an interproximal cavity. 

Treatment Options for Interproximal Cavities

There are many different treatment options for interproximal cavities. The quickest, cheapest, and the noninvasive option is flouride gel recalcification. Fluoride gel recalcification is sometimes possible if the decay does not yet go all the way into the dentin layer. With this treatment, the tooth is simply coated with a fluoride gel and treated with a UV light.

However, most of the time, interproximal cavities need to be drilled out and either filled or the tooth covered by a crown.

Finally, for excessive tooth decay where a cavity has been present and gone untreated for a long time, a root canal may be necessary. For more information, visit websites like