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Tooth decay is a disease of the tooth that undergoes an alteration of the enamel and after the dentin that leads to the formation of cavities in the tooth and its gradual destruction. It is the third most frequent pathology in the world, in fact it is very common in both men and women of any age, and affects canines, incisors or molars alike. A caries develops when the bacteria of dental plaque transform food waste into acid substances that attack the tooth enamel. The two most important factors behind caries are diets rich in sugars and poor oral hygiene.

Remember that if you have any type of problem with your teeth, you should visit Parkwood Green Dental, here we will help you with that.

Definition

Caries is an infectious disease of the teeth that damages the dental structure. Dental caries is one of the most frequent diseases in humans. Caries causes the progressive destruction of dental tissue.

Development

A dental plaque is composed of bacteria, acids and food waste mixed with saliva. Bacteria transform food waste into acids that attack the enamel of the tooth and cause tooth decay.

Causes

  • Bad oral hygiene.
  • Excessive consumption of sweets
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes

cavities can evolve for several weeks or months without causing pain. The first symptoms of dental caries appear when the caries is very advanced and the tooth is deeply pitted. There are pains in the tooth with cavities. Sensation of bad taste in the mouth.

If the tooth is not treated, complications such as the formation of an abscess and the death of the tooth may occur.

Prevention

The prevention of dental caries implies first and foremost:

Good oral hygiene

  • Brush your teeth regularly (at least twice a day, first in the morning and once in the evening), but preferably after each meal.
  • Avoid very sugary drinks such as soft drinks, syrups and fruit juices.
  • Regular visits to the dentist to detect a caries and cure it at an early stage.

 

Diagnosis

A visit to the dentist can diagnose tooth decay. An x-ray can detect more accurately the first signs of early caries. This examination, if performed since the first signs of pain appear, can facilitate the early treatment of caries.

Treatment

Depends on the stage of development of caries. If it is detected in time, cleaning with a dental drill followed by a filling of the tooth called a filling or filling (most often the amalgam is used today) is usually sufficient. However, if the cavity is very deep and the tooth reaches the pulp, it will be necessary to devitalize the root of the tooth under local anesthesia, that is, to eliminate the pulp of the infected tooth and fill it with amalgam. In case of abscess or infection too widespread, a tooth extraction may be necessary.

Prevention

Of course, good oral hygiene must be maintained. This involves brushing your teeth daily to remove the plaque, ideally after each meal. Also avoid the abuse of sweets, especially between meals. Finally, an annual “routine” visit to the dentist is highly recommended.

How to brush your teeth well?

  • Brush your teeth at least 2 times a day.
  • First brush the top teeth then the bottom ones.
  • Perform a rotating movement when brushing the teeth, from the gums to the teeth.
  • Place the brush between the teeth diagonally so that the bristles can reach the roots of the teeth and tilt the brush about 45 degrees on the gums.
  • Brush from top to bottom.
  • Never brush horizontally.
  • Place the brush on each tooth and brush gently.
  • Brush the back of the tooth from the bottom up.
  • Change the toothbrush regularly.
  • Dentists advise changing the toothbrush every 3 to 6 months.
  • A new brush allows you to remove more food waste than a brush used for months or years.

Prevention must begin to be applied from the first months of life of children

Dietary measures

  • Their mission is to decrease the raw material (sugars) on which bacteria act.
  • Decrease the frequency of exposure to sugars, instead of reducing the total amount of sugars.
  • Avoid foods that stick to the teeth (chewing gum, soft candy) by its prolonged stay on the surface of the teeth.
  • Avoid the use of sucrose. Use, instead, xylitol and sorbitol that develop a bacterial flora with less cariogenic capacity.
  • In infants, avoid prolonged contact of the teeth with the teat of the bottles (no more than 15-20 minutes per feeding).
  • Avoid giving bottles at night or at nap time. Do not sweeten pacifiers with honey or sugar and avoid the intake of fruit juices by bottle.
  • Encourage the intake of foods rich in fibre such as carrots or apples.

Dental hygiene measures

  • Parents must take responsibility for oral hygiene until the child acquires sufficient skill.
  • Brushing the teeth
  • It should start as soon as the first teeth appear.
  • A toothbrush appropriate for children should be used.
  • It must be applied with a correct technique.
  • It is not advisable to use fluoride toothpaste in children under 5-6 years old because of the tendency to swallow it at these ages.
  • The use of electric brushes does not improve the results of manual brushing. They would be indicated in people with manual skill difficulties.
  • The ideal is to brush our teeth after every time we eat. If this is not possible, it is recommended to do it after the main intakes, three times a day.
  • The use of mouthwashes may be indicated in patients who do not achieve the desired results with mechanical methods. Its use must be indicated by a dentist (they have effects on the usual bacterial flora of the mouth and on the dentin tissues, some of which can produce stains).

Flossing

  • It is a perfect complement to tooth brushing to eliminate the food remains that remain between the teeth.
  • It requires some training.
  • At least it should be used every night although it would be better after the three main meals.

Remember that nothing replaces a visit to the dentist. Visit Parkwood Green Dental and ensure your teeth remain as healthy as always.