Oral Health
What Causes Cavities? : How to Prevent Tooth Decay?

What Causes Cavities? : How to Prevent Tooth Decay?

Cavities are quite often that need to be addressed many times. We usually talk about certain health conditions but the cavity is less addressed. However, it’s not a small problem.

As per the report, around 80% of Americans have one decay issue in their lifetime by the mid-30s. In addition, the major portion of victims is found in the small age group, including children.

Even though, adults face such issues due to lack of awareness. As a result, having proper knowledge of your health condition is the most essential aspect to not getting trapped in these problems.

However, cavities can occur anywhere in the teeth. It’s a hole in the teeth that is occurred due to tooth decay in multiple places such as upper teeth and in between teeth. It can be tiny or big.

Cavities can be identified on the basis of symptoms like infection, pain, and sensitivity.

Apart from that, eating high sugar ingredient food can also causes cavity issues. But to understand causes in depth let’s move to the next phase of the blog where we will discuss causes and preventions. 

What are the types of cavities?

Tooth decay can occur in all layers of the teeth. To be more precise there are four layers of teeth which include Enamel, Dentin, Cementum, and Pulp. It spreads more quickly and reached the innermost layer of the teeth. 

types of cavities, Cavities

Image credit: Houstonspediatricdentist

Let’s understand the three most affected layers by tooth decay. 

  • Smooth surface:

Tooth decay that occurs on the smooth surface of your teeth can be prevented since they are slow-growing. One can prevent that cause that can become the reason for a bigger problem of your teeth. 

Teenagers in their 20s often develop these types of issues. As a result, it can be prevented- by proper brushing, clinical cleaning, and flossing.    

  • Pit and fissure decay: 

Pit and fissures occur in the chewing surface of the teeth which is the uppermost part. It grows rapidly at the teenage age and gradually, it front side of the back teeth.  

These grooves are both premolars and molars. But, usually, the Pit fissure cavity is affected in the molars and then deep to the premolars. 

  • Root decay

It’s the most common tooth decay. People often drink cold drinks and hot drinks which are highly harmful to the roots of teeth. Issues like sensitivity to heat, cold, sweat foods, and drinks.

It pains while chewing the food or feels sensitivity while drinking. 

Top 5 factors that cause cavities  

Cavities develop due to many factors but these are some of the main causes of cavities that play a significant role in developing cavities. 

#1 Bacteria: 

On a day-to-day basis, bacteria enter our bodies from the food and drinks we consume. But the bacteria which our mouth contains naturally streptococcus mutants.

And when a large amount of bacteria resides in the same area it forms acidic. Eventually, that acid will cause issues like tooth decay and dental cavity. 

#2 Sugars:  

Sugar is present in most dairy foods such as fruits, drinks, and ominous beverages. And sugar contains bacteria that feed on the teeth for a longer time and a large number of bacteria form carbohydrates into acids. 

After consuming food 15 minutes later bacteria can consume and excrete the sugar from your meal. The process continues and eventually, it will collect a large number of bacteria if not cleaned regularly. 

#3 Plaque:  

Dental plaque is a yellow pale substance that derives from your food and bacteria. It is visible in between your teeth and then around the surface when it grows.   

Dental plaque, Cavities

Image credit: ledowndentistry 

However, due to poor oral hygiene plaque buildup easily into your teeth and gradually grows resulting in tooth decay and gum diseases. 

#4 Parafunction:

Parafunction is a term used to explain any abnormal function. Parafunction is described as repetitive behavior that targets the oral structure.

Bruxism is a parafunctional activity that has been identified due to which teeth decay occurs or causes teeth grinding and clenching.

It can occur consciously when one is awake or while sleeping at night. However, Anxiety and stress have been related to awake bruxing, which is more common in females and is thought to impact 20% of the population.

#5 Certain medical conditions:

Several medical conditions can also affect your oral health. For instance, certain diseases like diabetes can increase the risk of gum diseases.

As it includes high sugar consumption and from that bacteria are extracted and formed acidic. 

However, there are many medical treatments that have harmful dental effects such as the dry mouth. Saliva is important to keep you healthy by managing bacteria levels in your mouth.

How can one prevent cavities?

Proper oral hygiene is important to avoid such cavities and tooth decay issues. Good teeth and care include: 

  • Toothbrushing with a fluoride toothpaste at least twists a day and cleaning teeth at normal temperature after taking every meal.
  • Avoid eating high-sugar level foods and drinks
  • Daily flossing to clean up the plaque stuck between the teeth
  • Manage saliva level and don’t keep mouth dry for longer-period
  • Don’t consume the hard substance of food which can create pain in your teeth
  • Clean your teeth with normal water in between the meals

When should I consult the doctor?

One should consult a doctor in case if you experience:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Signs of infection
  • Swollen face
  • Toothache or mouth pain

However, these days consulting healthcare professionals has become easy with the use of technological tools like telemedicine and for dentists doing medical practice is also effortless by utilizing dentist practice management software.

To sum it up

Although, dental problems are quite often, if an individual does not take care of it may create a bigger issue. So take dental issues as a serious concern.

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