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What Is Tooth Decay? How To Prevent It?

Posted by ROTA DENTAL on Jul 5 2022, 12:08 AM

Tooth decay is the permanent damage of a tooth's enamel as a result of bacterial action. It happens when your tooth's enamel is broken down by plaque, which contains acid-producing bacteria, leading to the formation of cavities. 

How Does Tooth Decay Occur?

Tooth decay is caused when plaque builds up on the teeth. Plaque is formed when sugars and starches interact with the bacteria in our mouths. Bacteria break down these foods and release acids that attack our tooth enamel.

Who Is At Risk For Tooth Decay And Cavities?

Anyone who eats sugary foods and drinks is at risk for cavities. However, some groups are at higher risk than others. Tooth decay affects both children and adults.

Here are some common risk factors for tooth decay:

  • Not brushing and flossing regularly
  • Eating sugary and starchy foods and drinks
  • Not drinking fluoridated water
  • Having dry mouth (also called xerostomia)
  • Having certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or kidney disease
  • Brushing teeth too hard
  • Using tobacco or smokeless tobacco

How Can I Prevent Tooth Decay?

The best way to fight tooth decay is by practicing good oral hygiene. Here are the measures to be taken to prevent tooth decay:

  • Brush and floss your teeth regularly

Brushing and flossing your teeth regularly can help prevent tooth decay. If plaque is not removed from teeth every day, a layer of bacteria forms on the teeth, causing tooth decay and cavities. Brushing and flossing your teeth can prevent this bacteria from forming, so tooth decay can be avoided.

  • Limit sugary foods and drinks

Tooth decay occurs when acid from plaque attacks your tooth enamel. One defense against tooth decay is limiting your consumption of sugary foods and drinks. These foods and beverages include candy, cookies, soda, and fruit juice.

  • Rinse your mouth with water after meals

After you eat, you're not only providing your body with food, but you're also providing it with sugars. These sugars can get stuck in the tiny grooves of your teeth, forming plaque. If you allow this plaque to sit, it can eat away at your tooth enamel, causing tooth decay. That's why it's so important to rinse out your mouth with water after every meal.

  • See your dentist for regular cleanings

See your dentist for regular check-ups and cleanings. Your dentist can clean plaque and tartar from your teeth to help prevent tooth decay. He or she can also identify signs of tooth decay early, so you can get the treatment you need to prevent cavities.

  • Consider dental sealants

Dental sealants are plastic coatings that are applied to the chewing surfaces of teeth. They are used to prevent tooth decay and cavities by protecting the teeth from plaque and bacteria that build up on the surfaces of the teeth.

  • Use fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash

Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel, which makes it more resistant to decay. It can also reverse early decay. So, incorporate fluoride products into your oral care routine. 

To learn more tips for preventing tooth decay, you can reach us at Rota Advanced Dental Care, 6210 Woodmen Park View, Colorado Springs, CO 80923. Call Dentist in Colorado Springs, CO, at (719) 598-1224 to book an appointment.

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Location

6210 Woodmen Park View, Colorado Springs, CO 80923

Phone: (719) 598-1224

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