Tooth decay is the second most common disorder right after the common cold. The mouth is a breeding ground for bacteria. Bacteria will change carbs and starches into acids. Acids, foods bacteria, and saliva combine to create plaque.
Plaque is removable by brushing and can be harmless at first.Plaque begins to build up around 20 minutes after eating. If it isn’t removed tartar will form which will irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, cavities, and periodontal.
Diet is the cause for most tooth decay. Higher starch and carbohydrate diets will increase the risk of tooth decay. Sticky foods increase the risk because they are harder to remove.
Most of the time there are no symptoms which is why it is important to visit your Sun City dentist regularly.
If symptoms do start to occur it is usually tooth pain or an achy feeling. These symptoms usually occur after consuming sweet, hot or cold foods and drinks. Sometimes in more advanced tooth decay there will be visible pits or holes in the teeth.
Fortunately most cavities are caught during routine checkups. Visiting the dentist twice a year is the best thing that a person can do for their oral health. X-rays may need to be taken to see possible tooth decay between teeth.
To prevent further damage, treatments can include fillings, root canals, or crowns. A filling will removed the damaged portion of the tooth and refill it with a metal like gold, silver alloy, or porcelain. Porcelain is closer in color to a natural tooth color and is usually the preferred filling especially for front teeth.
Crowns are used for more extensive damage. They are used when too much of the tooth will need to be removed and a filling would lead to further breakage. The decayed area will be removed and repaired before the crown is made to be placed on top of what is left of the tooth.
Root canals are only used if there is damage to the nerve inside. The nerve is removed along with any decay and the root is filled with a sealing material.
Overall the best plan of attack for fighting off tooth decay is to watch your diet and visit your dentist on a regular basis to clean off what brushing cannot.