Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Multimedia

Your dentist can usually detect tooth decay easily. He or she will ask about tooth pain and sensitivity. Your dentist will examine your mouth and teeth and may probe with dental instruments to check for soft areas. You may also have dental X-rays, which can show the extent of cavities and decay. Your dentist will also be able to tell you specifically which of the three types of cavities you have — smooth surface, pit and fissure, or root.

Apr. 28, 2011