Cavities are permanently damaged areas in the hard surface of the teeth that develop into tiny openings or holes. Cavities, also called tooth decay or caries, are caused by a combination of factors, including bacteria, frequent snacking, sipping sugary drinks, and insufficient or irregular cleaning of the teeth. Tooth decay is among the world's most common health problems.
Decay can be symptom free and may only be identified by your dentist during a routine examination. If decay is already visible in the mouth and your child is experiencing pain, then the decay has likely reached deeper levels and your child should see the dentist immediately.