Dental Caries: Causes and Prevention

Dental Caries: Causes and Prevention

Dental caries, colloquially known as tooth decay could manifest due to several reasons ranging from insufficient exposure to fluoride to excessive consumption of processed sugar to poor oral hygiene standards. Dental health plays a much bigger role in your overall well being than one can fathom. Poor dental health causes bacteria to fester in your bloodstream which can ultimately affect the heart valves. Brushing twice a day, religiously flossing, and availing check-ups with experts or even online doctors regularly can help a great deal.

What causes Dental Caries?

Some of the factors that cause dental caries are:

  1. Plaque Formation: The transparent layer that lines your teeth along its edges and along the gum line refers to plaque. Plaque forms when residue food particles-especially sugar or other starchy food- combine with saliva which becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. This bacteria produces ceratin acids which can form dental caries.
  2. Tartar Build Up: When plaque occurs, the minerals from your saliva build-up to form a yellow build-up called Tartar. You can consult online doctors and regularly floss to dislodge the build-up found between teeth, but you might have to visit a doctor to have it flushed out completely. Tartar build-up traps bacteria against your teeth expediting dental caries.
  3. Enamel Erosion: The acids formed by bacteria causes erosion of the minerals found in your tooth’s enamel. This erosion causes small openings or holes within the enamel — the primary stage of cavities. Once this enamel is worn away, the bacterium and acid reach the dentin, the underlying layer of your teeth. This layer is softer than the enamel and can easily corrode from the harsh acid. The dentin has small tubes that directly communicate with the nerve of the tooth inflicting sensitivity.
  4. Swollen Pulp: As the acid continues to reach to corrode the dentin, it reaches the core of the tooth known as the pulp. The pulp contains all the nerves and blood vessels. This pulp becomes swollen and irritated from the bacteria. Because there is no place for the swelling to expand inside of a tooth, the nerve becomes pressed, causing pain. Discomfort can even extend outside of the root of the tooth to the bone. At this stage, dental caries completely fester in the teeth.

How can I prevent Dental Caries?

Maintaining good oral hygiene standards helps clear your oral cavity off build-ups and bacteria and subsequently dental caries. Here are a few more tips you can follow to ensure you manage ot keep dental caries at bay:

  1. Use a Fluoride Toothpaste: Use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste to brush your teeth twice a day.
  2. Rinse and Floss: Flossing can help dislodge the build-up found between your teeth. Consult online doctors regularly, for if they feel you are at a high risk of developing dental caries they will recommend you to rinse with a fluoride-based mouth wash.
  3. Avoid Sugary Food: Candies, chocolates, sweets, and sodas that are rich in sugar content expedite the formation of plaque and subsequently tartar and hence need to be consumed in strict moderation.
  4. Consider dental sealants: Dental sealants refer to a protective plastic coating applied to the chewing surface of back teeth. It seals off the gaps that tend to collect food, hence protecting tooth enamel from plaque and acid. Sealants are meant for one-time use and can be reused provided it is maintained properly.

“Better safe than sorry” is a phrase extremely relevant to dental caries. Consistently maintaining oral hygiene can avoid all the pain and hassle of dental caries. Consult online doctors today to know more.

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