If you’ve ever had a cavity, chances are you’d like to avoid ever having them again! By understanding how a cavity is formed, you can take the necessary steps to prevent them from occurring. Just read the following steps so you can keep your teeth in good health!
Step 1: The plaque forms along your gum line.
Plaque is a colorless, sticky biofilm that forms on your teeth. The bacteria in plaque naturally live in your mouth, so having it on your teeth is just a part of life! However, if plaque is not removed from the surface of your teeth, this is when it can cause cavities.
Step 2: You consume sugar.
Bacteria in plaque feeds on sugar. So when you consume sugary foods or drinks, it allows this bacteria to thrive in your mouth and linger for longer than you would like.
Step 3: The bacteria on your teeth release acids.
About twenty minutes after these bacteria have fed on the sugar in your food, they release an acidic substance that can be very harmful to your teeth if not removed.
Step 4: The acids wear down your dental enamel.
Acids that reside on your teeth naturally begin to wear away your dental enamel—the white, outermost layer of your teeth. This acid creates tiny little openings in the enamel. This is the first stage of a cavity.
Step 5: This wearing down process continues to wreak havoc on your tooth.
Ultimately, these acids continue to wear down your tooth layer by layer until it has reached the advanced stage of decay—impacting the inner pulp of your tooth. At this stage, it is possible that you would need a root canal.
So how can you prevent this from happening?
Everyone has to deal with plaque, but you don’t necessarily have to endure cavities. What really matters is how you take care of your teeth. You must brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice a day, and brushing after meals can also be very helpful.
Remember, the process of plaque-producing acids takes about 20 minutes from your first bite of food, so removing the plaque before it can begin the wearing down process is your best bet for fighting cavities. Bonus points if you avoid sucking on hard candies or drinking a soda over the course of the day—extended exposure to these sugars is much more harmful than the amount of sugar itself.
You also need to make sure that you floss once a day. Otherwise, you risk having damage from the plaque between your teeth. And finally, you can rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash as a supplement to your flossing and brushing routine. This can give you an additional edge in your fight against plaque.
Luckily, if you do have a cavity, it can easily be treated. Just call TruBlu Dentistry today to set up an appointment, and we’ll help you determine the best course of action for restoring your oral health.