Adult Tooth Decay & Your Options
Cavities or tooth decay in adults is a very common problem. The condition can happen to anyone, but adults are more prone to cavities. So, what are cavities? Well, cavities are the softening of your tooth’s enamel. If you have a build-up of plaque on your teeth, the bacteria in the mouth will break down the sugars and acid is created as a by-product which damages the enamel. Plaque acid slowly wears away the enamel and can eventually destroy the entire tooth.
Cavities are a very severe problem that, oftentimes lead to tooth decay. Cavities and tooth decay can occur for several reasons. Here are some of the common reasons why tooth decay happens.
Bad Oral Hygiene
Not brushing regularly is one of the biggest causes of cavities. When you don’t brush, plaque builds up and that in turn can allow bacteria to produce acid that damage the enamel.
Plaque is formed when bacteria, acid, food particles, and saliva mix in your mouth. Bacterial plaque organisms release acid when they break down the food particles left in the mouth. A prolonged build-up of bacteria means that cavities will occur eventually over time.
One of the primary purposes of saliva is to help your mouth clean itself. If you have a dry mouth, then your mouth won’t be able to “self-clean”. Make sure you limit your dry mouth causing habits and drink plenty of water. Consult Dr. Mjahed, a dentist in Uptown Charlotte NC, if you have a chronic dry mouth problem.
Signs and Symptoms of Cavities & Tooth Decay
There are a few ways you can find out if you have tooth decay. If you have any of the following symptoms you’ll want to schedule an appointment with District Dentistry in Uptown Charlotte. Dr. Mjahed will be able to provide you with the proper course of action.
So let’s talk about the symptoms:
- Pain: When you have tooth decay, you are bound to have some discomfort and pain associated with it.
- Pressure: If you have a cavity, you will feel increased pressure on the tooth. A sensitive tooth and a continuous toothache are symptoms of a cavity.
- Holes: When tooth decay becomes comprehensive, you might see a hole or pits on the tooth. However, sometimes you can only see them through X-rays.
- Pus: If you see pus coming out of your teeth, the cavity has taken a serious turn and you should consult Dr. Mjahed immediately.
Options to Prevent Tooth Decay & Cavities
So here are some easy ways to ensure you don’t get tooth decay and cavities.
We don’t often think about the types of toothbrushes we use, but we should. There are plenty of toothbrush options out there with different functionality. Get a toothbrush that has bristles that can reach all the exposed surfaces and those hard to reach crevices. For additional benefit, get a toothbrush with a tongue cleaner.
ADA Accredited Toothpaste
Dental experts will tell you that you should buy toothpaste that has been accredited by the American Dental Association. This way you can ensure a high-quality product and prevent future cavities.
No matter the type of toothbrush you use, there will always be places where it won’t be able to reach. So flossing becomes vital in preventing cavities. Floss can reach crevices to clean out small food particles and plaque, keeping even the tightest of spots clean and clear.
The purpose of mouthwash is not only to make you feel refreshed, but also to kill excessive bacteria and remove plaque. Regularly using good quality mouthwash will help you prevent cavities and keep tooth decay at bay.
These are the some of things you can do to prevent adult tooth decay. Make sure you follow them and if you already are suffering then give Dr. Mjahed a call.