A cavitation occurs when an unhealed hole in your jawbone (usually resulting from an extraction) is compromised by bacteria, resulting in chronic irritation and/or infection.
Treatment of cavitations require specialized and focused practice.
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What is a cavitation? What are the issues?
What is a cavitation?
A cavitation occurs when an unhealed hole in your jawbone is compromised by bacteria, resulting in chronic irritation and/or infection.
This is sometimes results from extractions that left the periodontal ligament and previous blood supply around the tooth.
Why would you have a tooth extracted?
The decision to pull a tooth is a very important and permanent one. Teeth need to be removed due to fracture, failed root canals, infection, or lack of room in the arches (wisdom teeth or orthodontic extractions).
When the dentist removed the tooth, they are taught to “wiggle “ the tooth out by pushing or pulling it out with instruments, or, at worst, cutting it out of the bone if the tooth is difficult to remove.
Why would a dentist leave the periodontal ligament behind?
Most of the time, dentists are trained to leave it behind, to be re-absorbed by the body as part of the healing process.
Why could this be a problem?
The most common problem with this is when bacteria invade the hole prior to it being covered with tissue.
Visually, it will appear normal, but inside, it can become chronically irritated and/or infected.
These dental focal infections can include impacted wisdom teeth, incompletely extracted wisdom (and other) teeth, failed root canals, failed dental implants, and devitalized teeth (from deep fillings, crowns or physical trauma).
Why are dental focal infections difficult to diagnose?
What makes chronic dental focal infections so particularly difficult to diagnose is their relative silence in the mouth. That is, in contrast to acute illnesses such as ear infections that can feel quite fiery and hot, typically dental foci “smolder” for years, manifesting only mild and intermittent symptoms of pain and swelling.
How would you know if you had a cavitation?
To diagnose, a special digital scan called a cone beam takes a 3D image of your entire head. This is performed at an imaging center. It is similar to an MRI of your skull, which allows the doctor to see your entire upper and lower jaw, including the sinus, in small slices and from all angles.