One of the most common questions people have is about tooth decay. How does tooth decay develop if you are brushing every day? If you are like many, you think you are doing enough to keep decay at bay, but in reality, you may not be doing enough. At Lovett Dental Missouri City, we encourage you to be proactive by learning about and taking aggressive steps to manage your dental needs. It can help to learn how to stop tooth decay.
How Does Tooth Decay Develop Then?
Tooth decay is a term used to describe the break down of the enamel on the teeth. The most common cause of this is bacteria. Your mouth has millions of bacteria present. Good oral hygiene, such as brushing and flossing throughout the day, can help reduce the amount of bacteria present. Your immune system can then work to keep the rest in check. However, what you eat, how you care for your teeth, and whether or not you get routine teeth cleanings all impact the amount of bacteria present.
So how does tooth decay develop when bacteria are allowed to grow rapidly? Here is what happens:
- The bacteria cause plaque, a sticky substance that coats your teeth and turns into tartar, a hard material that causes discoloration.
- The tartar creates areas of weakness and holes in the enamel, the hard, protective exterior of the tooth.
- These holes allow bacteria to get into the dentin, a softer area of the tooth.
- Once it gets into the dentin, it can damage the tooth’s root and nerves, causing severe pain and discomfort.
- Over time, this causes damage to the root so much so that the tooth must be extracted.
When you consider these steps, it is clear you need to do whatever it takes to keep your oral health in check. This entire process can take days, weeks, or months to occur, depending on just how invasive the bacteria is.
How You Can Minimize Tooth Decay
With the right resources, you can fight tooth decay. Being vigilant about taking care of your oral hygiene can make all the difference and can go a long way. How does tooth decay develop when you are aggressively minimizing bacteria? It does not happen. Getting rid of the chance for the bacteria to grow is how to best combat tooth decay. How can you do this?
- Schedule routine dental checkups at least every six months.
- Have professional teeth cleaning every six months.
- Talk to your dentist about preventative tools such as dental fluoride treatments and dental sealant applications.
- If you have cavities, get the necessary root canal therapy to stop bacteria from penetrating into your tooth further.
- If you have bleeding gums or damaged gumlines from bacteria, request periodontal disease treatment.
The more aggressive you are at keeping your smile healthy, the more likely bacteria is to remain under control. It is also important to note that tooth loss is just one of the complications possible from tooth decay. This bacteria, if left unchecked, can also damage your heart and lead to a stroke in some people.
Protect Your Oral Health at Lovett Dental Missouri City
We offer a number of services to help you protect your teeth. These include:
Your oral health is important to you. It is also important to us. How does tooth decay develop? Often, it is because of preventable causes. Protect your teeth by coming in to see your dentist at Lovett Dental Missouri City. Schedule a consultation and cleaning by calling 281.346.9597 today. Let us help you protect your smile.