What Are the Common Causes of Tooth Decay, and How Can It Be Prevented?

What Are the Common Causes of Tooth Decay, and How Can It Be Prevented?

Apr 01, 2023

Tooth decay is damage to your tooth’s surface and enamel caused by bacteria in your mouth mixed with food debris that begin to rot, causing erosion. This disease can also lead to dental caries creating holes in your teeth. Failure to go for tooth decay treatment near you can cause severe infection and tooth loss. This piece focuses on tooth decay, how to spot its symptoms, what causes and how to prevent it.

Symptoms and Causes of Tooth Decay

Causes of Tooth Decay

Our mouths have both beneficial and harmful bacteria. Some of the harmful bacteria in your mouth cause tooth decay. These harmful bacteria combine with food debris stuck between your teeth and begin to rot. Your diet can quicken the rotting process. For instance, if you take lots of sugar, this sugar will be used by the bacteria to make acids. These acids begin to erode your enamel, and this causes the loss of vital minerals for your teeth.

If you don’t go to the general dentist near you for treatment, the acids harden into tartar, and this is what causes gum disease.

On top of that, our teeth get lots of minerals from water, toothpaste and foods we consume. Saliva also plays a vital role in replenishing lost minerals. This is a natural process of losing and regaining minerals, and it happens throughout the day. Failure to take care of our teeth and gums and consuming lots of sugar can lead to losing vital minerals in your teeth. This leaves your teeth vulnerable to harmful bacteria, causing tooth decay.

The dentist in Fort Saskatchewan recommends going for routine dental checkups. If you don’t go for regular checkups, a white spot appears on your teeth where minerals have been lost. At this stage, the effects of tooth decay can be reversed. Your enamel can repair the damage caused.

However, more minerals are lost if you don’t maintain proper oral hygiene and continue consuming sugary foods. Gradually, your enamel becomes weak, and decay forms holes in your teeth. These holes can only be repaired through fillings.

Symptoms Of Tooth Decay

It can be challenging to identify tooth decay during the early stages. However, when the disease advances, you might notice the following symptoms:

  • Tooth sensitivity, especially when taking hot or cold drinks and foods.
  • Toothache.
  • Visible holes in your teeth.
  • White, brown or black staining on the affected tooth.
  • A tooth abscess can cause fever, facial swelling and pain.

How Can We Prevent Tooth Decay

Here are the various ways of preventing tooth decay:

  • Practice proper oral hygiene- tooth decay is caused by bacteria and food debris between your teeth. Therefore, brush twice and floss at least once to ensure no food particles are left in your teeth.
  • Avoid smoking tobacco- generally, tobacco is not good for oral and overall health. So, you can completely avoid smoking tobacco or limit its use.
  • Go for regular dental checkups at the general dentist near you.
  • Avoid consuming lots of sugary and starchy foods. Instead, opt for better food choices that replenish the minerals in your teeth and fortify your gums. Consider taking a balanced diet too.
  • Consider going for dental sealants, even for your kids. Dental sealants seal the pits and grooves in your teeth, eliminating room for food debris and bacteria to rot, forming acids that lead to tooth decay.
  • Ensure that you get sufficient fluoride- this is by brushing with fluoride toothpaste, using a fluoride mouth rinse and drinking tap water which contains fluoride.
  • Inquire about antibacterial treatments- if you’ve had tooth decay or are vulnerable to the disease, say due to a medical condition, you should inquire from the dentist in Fort Saskatchewan about antibacterial mouth rinses or any other treatment that can help reduce harmful bacteria in your mouth.

Keep Your Teeth Healthy, Strong, And Happy

Tooth decay can wreak havoc on your oral health and may interfere with your diet and routine. So, practising proper oral hygiene to eliminate harmful bacteria in your mouth would be best. Proper oral hygiene should also be followed by choosing teeth-healthy foods and visiting Town Crest Dental Clinic for dental checkups. Our dental professional can identify early signs of tooth decay and reverse any effects before the infection spreads deep and to other healthy teeth.