The holes in the teeth are referred to as cavities. Cavities can happen to anyone irrespective of age - children, youngsters, old people, and even infants.
It is the main reason for tooth decay or dental decay happening in the teeth.
Tooth decay starts occurring when bacteria in the mouth combine with the food to form plaque.
The plaque reacts with sugar and starch in the food consumed to form acids.
These acids in turn start attacking the tooth enamel and eat the minerals on this layer, which results in tooth decay.
Cavities, on the other hand, can vary in intensity depending upon how deeply they're affecting the teeth. If it is on surface-level only, it may even get unnoticed. However, when it goes deep into the inner layers, it can cause toothache, sensitivity to sweet, hot, or cold food items among other symptoms.
Causes of Cavity and Tooth Erosion
- Poor Oral Care - The most prominent reason for tooth decay is that people ignore oral care as they don't brush their teeth twice a day which lets the food debris remain stuck to the teeth. Another reason is that most people are also not aware of the correct way to brush their teeth and how to maintain oral health. Such knowledge should be given to every individual.
- Bad eating habits - People have become used to eating fast food and preserved/packaged food items on a regular basis without paying much attention to its consequences on the body and teeth. This leads to the formation of acids and the decaying of teeth.
- Excessive Consumption of Sweetened Beverages - Sugar-sweetened beverages have high levels of sugar and drinking these can significantly contribute to tooth decay. Regular and 'diet' soft drinks, sports drinks and energy drinks, fruit juices, fruit drinks, etc. also have high acid levels that can cause tooth erosion.
Healthy Habits to Maintain
- Brushing, flossing, and cleaning the teeth properly every day ensuring that no residue is left on the teeth.
- Using a Fluoride based toothpaste to reverse the action of acid on teeth
- Cleaning the mouth with water after consuming any food or drink.
- Paying a visit to the dentist after every 6 months (twice a year).
- Reducing the amount of fast food and sugary drinks consumed regularly.
Treatment for Cavity and Tooth Decay
- Fluoride Treatment - In the initial stage, to demineralize the building acid, fluoride treatment can be received at the dentist's clinic.
- Fillings - To cure the cavity at this stage, dentists use materials of several kinds, matching the color of the tooth, to fill in the gap after cleaning it.
- Crown Replacement - This treatment is given when the outer layer of the tooth gets damaged. The crown takes the place of the tooth.
- Root Canal Treatment - When the damage reaches the deeper layers of the tooth affecting the nerves, this treatment becomes mandatory.
- Removal of Tooth - Tooth extraction is the only way possible when the tooth is affected so that it can't be cured by any of the above-mentioned treatments. Dental Implants are the suitable treatment at this stage.
If the tooth is properly restored, you maintain good oral hygiene, and follow the advice of your dentist's regular check-ups, your tooth may last very well for the rest of your life.
If you would like to learn more about cavities and dental caries, contact your own dentist at Kirkland Premier Dentistry today!