The Average Number of Cavities by Age

It is difficult to provide an answer about the average number of cavities a person may have at a given age. It is because the prevalence of cavities varies significantly between people.

The average number of cavities varies depending on oral hygiene habits and the quality of dental care. But, it is generally accepted that the average number of adult cavities is between 9 and 12.

Age is proportional to the number of cavities. The average number of cavities grows as you get older only if you aren’t concerned about maintaining decent dental hygiene.

In this article, I will discuss the true causes of cavities and how they increase as we age. And what the most recent research says about the age-cavity relationship.

Eating a lot of processed sugars and carbs, having bad oral hygiene, and being unable to get to the dentist can put you at a higher risk of getting cavities than those who don’t.

For this reason, it is important to maintain a healthy diet, brush and floss regularly. Additionally, it is beneficial to limit sugary snacks and drinks. They can significantly contribute to the formation of smooth surface cavities.

Taking these proactive steps can minimize the risk of developing cavities. And reduce the overall number of cavities you may have at any age.

Studies show that the proportion of cavities is higher in children than in adults. Children eat more sugary foods like ice cream, chocolate, etc.

Second, children need to gain proper knowledge of maintaining good oral hygiene.

According to CBS News, dentists claim preschoolers are more prone to cavities. They attend multiple preschools every week.

Who is responsible for preschoolers’ cavities? Of course, their parents are. They do not force them to brush their teeth for oral hygiene.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) [1], the prevalence of cavities among children and adolescents in the United States is as follows:

  • Age 2 to 5: 20%
  • Age 6 to 11: 40%
  • Age 12 to 19: 60%
the prevalence of cavities among children and adolescents

For adults, the prevalence of cavities tends to decrease with age. It varies based on factors such as diet, oral hygiene, and access to dental treatment.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) [2], the prevalence of cavities among adults in various age groups is as follows:

  • Age 20 to 34: 85%
  • Age 35 to 49: 94%
  • Age 50 to 64: 95%
the prevalence of cavities among adults

Factors Influencing the Average Number of Cavities

Dietary Habits and Sugar Consumption:

One of the primary factors influencing the occurrence of cavities is dietary habits. Diets rich in sugars and carbohydrates create an environment conducive to the growth of harmful bacteria in the oral cavity.

The consumption of sugary foods and beverages leads to the production of acids that erode tooth enamel, ultimately resulting in cavities.

It’s imperative to adopt a balanced diet and minimize the intake of sugary substances to maintain optimal oral health.

Oral Hygiene Practices:

Oral hygiene practices are paramount in preventing cavities. Regular brushing and flossing help remove plaque, the sticky film of bacteria that can lead to tooth decay.

Using fluoride toothpaste further strengthens enamel and acts as a protective barrier against cavities.

In addition to daily oral care, routine dental check-ups are essential to identify and address potential issues before they escalate.

Fluoride Exposure:

Fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral, plays a vital role in cavity prevention. It strengthens tooth enamel and makes it more resistant to acid attacks.

Fluoride exposure can occur through various means, including fluoridated water, toothpaste, and professional dental treatments.

Ensuring adequate fluoride intake is crucial for reducing the likelihood of cavities and maintaining robust dental health.

Genetics and Susceptibility

Genetics also play a role in determining an individual’s susceptibility to cavities. Some people may inherently have stronger enamel or a more efficient saliva composition, providing a natural defence against cavity formation.

Understanding one’s genetic predisposition can help tailor oral care routines to address specific vulnerabilities.

Saliva Composition:

The composition of saliva is often an overlooked yet significant factor influencing cavity formation.

Saliva serves as a natural defence mechanism by neutralizing acids, remineralizing enamel, and washing away debris.

Issues like dry mouth can compromise saliva’s efficacy, making individuals more prone to cavities.

Staying hydrated and addressing any underlying conditions affecting saliva production are essential in maintaining optimal oral health.

Age and Tooth Development:

As individuals age, their teeth undergo various developmental stages, each influencing susceptibility to cavities.

With their developing enamel, children are often more prone to cavities, emphasizing the importance of instilling proper oral care habits from a young age.

Conversely, ageing adults may face challenges such as receding gums, increasing the risk of cavities in exposed tooth surfaces.

Age-specific Insights into Cavity Prevalence

According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, the prevalence of cavities among adults in the United States has decreased in recent years, but it is still a common problem.

In 2018, data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) found that about one-quarter of adults aged 20 to 64 had untreated cavities. [2]

one-quarter of adults aged 20 to 64 had untreated cavities

However, it is important to note that this data includes all adults in this age range (20 to 64). Researchers have not provided data for certain ages, such as 25 or 30, etc.

As a dental surgeon, I have to see a lot of patients every day. I’ll provide statistics from my personal experience. I’ll attempt to share a tool with you as well. So you can quickly figure out the average number of cavities.

If you’re between 20 and 30, you’ll typically have between 3 and 8 cavities. It varies from person to person due to different lifestyles and oral hygiene habits.

If you and your friend are 25, that doesn’t mean you have the same number of cavities. Your friend being a smoker and not hygienic may mean they have more cavities than you.

Keep in mind that these estimates are averages rather than exact numbers. The prevalence of cavities can vary significantly from person to person.

Regular dental checkups and basic oral hygiene are the only ways to avoid cavities.

Average Cavities Estimator:

Age and Cavities

The average number of cavities by age…

We are constantly improving this tool. It is possible that the values have changed when you return. Our goal is to correct predictions about the average number of cavities by age based on the latest research.
Average number of cavities are:

Read more: Magical Ways to stop tooth pain fast at home

What is a Root Canal Actually? (Video)

Source: Youtube ( Very Nice Smile Dental )

The average age of the first Root Canal:

Root canals are more commonly seen in adults. I can give you more information about the average age when people get their first root canal.

The average age for a first root canal is commonly between 30 and 50; however, this is not always the case.

Age is not the only factor that can increase the need for a root canal, as poor oral hygiene, dental trauma, and medical conditions can also play a role.

Proper care of your teeth is essential to ensure optimal oral health and avoid needing a root canal.

This includes brushing and flossing regularly, eating a healthy diet, and visiting your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings.

No matter what your age is, it is essential to take good care of your teeth.

The average number of dental crowns by age:

Dental crowns are a popular way to restore damaged or decayed teeth.

The average number of crowns needed by age varies but can range from one to six depending on dental health, lifestyle, and age.

Young adults typically require one to three crowns, middle-aged adults need three to five, and seniors typically need four to six crowns.

The average number of fillings by age 30:

By the age of 30, how many fillings is the average person expected to have?

This is a common question when determining if their dental health is on track. According to recent studies, the average number of fillings by age 30 is around 7.

Of course, this number can vary based on genetics, diet, oral hygiene habits, and access to dental care.

Some people may have no fillings by age 30, while others may have more than seven. Additionally, the size and severity of each cavity can also affect the number of fillings needed.

Understanding the average number of fillings by age 30 can help you to evaluate your dental health and consider preventative measures.

Cavities are typically not affected by ageing. It doesn’t matter what you eat if you take good care of your teeth and gums. You will have fewer cavities than people your age.

Teach your children how to manage their oral hygiene to avoid cavities properly. It will be beneficial for both of you in the future. Otherwise, be ready for multiple cavities and a lot of money to pay the dentist.

Everyone in different age groups has a different average number of cavities. I have developed an incredibly effective cavities risk estimator tool. You only need to answer a few questions; the tool will do the rest. Based on your answers, it will calculate and provide the best risk rate for developing cavities.

Why am I getting cavities in my 30s?

The reason is simple: You are not practicing appropriate oral hygiene. You may have unhealthy habits that wreak havoc on your dental health.

Everyone, in my experience, is aware of dental concerns. However, most people ignore their oral health and are prone to cavities.

Take a look at your oral habits. You might discover why you’re getting so many cavities before age 30!

Here are some of the most typical oral habits that could be causing cavities in the 30s:

  1. Consumptions of Sugary Foods (ice cream, chocolate, etc.)
  2. Smoking
  3. Alcoholic Drinking
  4. Neglect Brushing & Flossing
  5. Fast Food Intake
  6. Chewing Gums
  7. Lack of sleep
  8. No Excercise
  9. Irregular Eating
  10. Too Much Stress


Why my cavity tooth is feeling like something is going to explode?

It is not uncommon for a cavity to cause a sensation of something “exploding” or “bursting” in the mouth. This sensation is usually due to the pressure in the tooth when the cavity becomes large or deep.

As the cavity grows, it can cause the tooth to become more sensitive to pressure and temperature. It can lead to acute pain when eating, drinking, or touching the tooth.

Suppose you are experiencing this sensation and suspect you may have a cavity. It would be best if you visited a dentist as soon as possible.

The sooner a cavity is diagnosed and treated, the less damage it will likely cause. A filling or other restorative procedure can restore the tooth’s function and appearance.

Brushing and flossing are also crucial for practicing good oral hygiene. These will help develop new cavities and keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Does having Cavities mean your Teeth will fall out?

The answer is an absolute “NO!”. Even if you have multiple cavities, this does not always indicate that you will lose all of your teeth.

There are multiple types of cavities. Cavities might be deadly only if left untreated. If you have cavities, modify your routine, and avoid unhealthy meals, your teeth will not fall out.

Leaving cavities untreated will cause them to grow and worsen. Additionally, you should visit the dentist if you have severe pain. Your dentist will recommend either root canal therapy or tooth extraction.

Having cavities is not a bad thing. But not following proper oral hygiene is harmful because it can cause severe pain.

Can a Cavity go away with Brushing?

It is possible if you discover the cavity at an early stage. You discover a tiny black spot on your teeth and practice better dental hygiene. So you can stop the process of cavity development.

Once a cavity has formed, it cannot be removed by simple brushing or flossing. You can try alternative methods such as cavity filling, crowns, etc.

I recommend you visit the dentist and have a complete oral examination. It will save you a lot of money and prevent cavities.

How many cavities are considered normal for children?

The number of cavities can vary, but it is generally recommended for children to have as few cavities as possible. Regular dental check-ups can help identify and address cavities early.

Can cavities be reversed naturally?

Cavities cannot be reversed naturally. Once tooth enamel is damaged, it cannot regenerate. However, early-stage cavities can be treated, preventing further decay.

Are cavities contagious?

Cavities themselves are not contagious, but the bacteria that cause cavities can be transmitted from person to person through saliva, such as sharing utensils or kissing.

Can cavities cause tooth sensitivity?

Yeah, cavities can lead to sensitive teeth, especially when the decay gets down to the deeper layers of the tooth, which is where the nerves are.

Is it normal to get more cavities as you age?

It is not necessarily normal to get more cavities as you age, but factors such as changes in oral health, medication use, and dry mouth can increase the risk of cavities in older adults.

Why is my dentist too much expensive?

It is essential to visit a dentist regularly, even if expensive because proper dental care is essential for maintaining good oral health.

Regular dental check-ups can help to identify and treat problems such as cavities, gum disease, and other oral health conditions before they become more serious.

Don’t worry about the cost. There are several options you can consider to help make it more affordable.

For example, you may be able to find a dentist with discounted rates for uninsured patients.

Many dental insurance plans also cover a portion of the cost of preventive care, such as cleanings and check-ups. They can also help to reduce the overall cost of dental care.

If you are unable to afford dental care. You may be able to find resources in your community that offers free or low-cost dental services. Find clinics or non-profit groups that help those with poor incomes or no insurance.

Overall, it is vital to prioritize your oral health. And to make sure you are getting the dental care you need. While it may be expensive, neglecting your oral health can be much higher in the long run.

You should not neglect your dental health just because dentistry is extremely expensive. Otherwise, it may be too late and considerably more expensive if the problem worsens.


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Dr. Ahtsham

I am a dentist. I am working hard to keep this blog updated for those suffering from tooth pain. It is my goal to make this blog the source for all information regarding tooth pain. Feel free to contact me if you are suffering from toothache.

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