Severe ECC: Cavitations

Cavitations represent areas where loss of enamel has exposed underlying dentin.

Appearance & Symptoms

  • Anterior upper incisors are typically affected first.
  • Lesions are initially pale yellow and become progressively darker as they become stained with pigments from food.
  • Teeth may be sensitive to thermal changes and sweet or sour foods or drinks.
  • Children may be too young to articulate symptoms.

Treatment & Referral

  • Immediate dental referral should be arranged
  • Some cavities may be restored using fluoride releasing restorative materials.
  • Provide dietary and oral hygiene counseling.
  • Use of topical fluoride to prevent development of new lesions.


Cavitations represent areas of enamel loss exposing underlying dentin

Joanna Douglass, BDS, DDS

Cavities on the lingual tooth surfaces are easily overlooked

Joanna Douglass, BDS, DDS