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Your teeth are the most underappreciated part of your body. If you don’t give them proper care, there is a very good chance that you will develop severe dental problems, the most common being tooth decay. Tooth decay is caused when the bacteria that are present in your mouth churn out more acid than is necessary, gradually eroding the teeth. The acids bore a hole in the tooth, causing cavity.
You might be suffering from tooth decay if you experience:
- Teeth discoloration
- Tooth infection
- Tooth loss
Causes of tooth decay
Tooth decay occurs when the bacteria that reside in your mouth start producing excessive acids which eventually erode the tooth.
How does it happen?
Your teeth have three protective layers: an outer layer called enamel, middle layer called dentin and an inner layer called pulp. The bacteria in the mouth along with acid and broken down food particles attack the tooth and erode it layer by layer. Tooth decay worsens as each layer is eroded.
Here are some common causes behind tooth decay:
- Poor oral hygiene i.e. not brushing or flossing your teeth regularly
- Eating foods that help bacteria grow, such as sugary foods and foods rich in carbohydrates
- Dry mouth refers to very little saliva in your mouth. Saliva helps countering the effects of the acids
How to prevent tooth decay
Most cases of tooth decay can be prevented by a healthy oral hygiene regime and having a balanced diet. Here are some steps you can take to prevent tooth decay:
- Regularly brush your teeth. Brush your teeth after each meal and especially before you go to sleep. Using a fluoride-rich toothpaste will help keep tooth decay at bay.
- The space between your teeth is where food particles get lodged. Keep them clean by flossing regularly.
- Make balanced diet a part of your life. Avoid food high on sugar or carbohydrates. Also, avoid eating too much sticky food, as it is more likely to cling to your teeth than anything else.
- Mouthwash regularly using a solution rich in fluoride. Fluoride has antiseptic properties that help kill the bacteria,
- Lastly, visit your dentist regularly for checkups
Tooth decay is one of the most common lifestyle-based problems. The right combination of dental hygiene and a balanced diet goes a long way in preventing it. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a dentist.
Recently I was eating a ice cream suddenly my teeth getting pain very hardly nd sometimes when i'm doing brush couple of blood carry out. What I do for getting relief from it.
Inside lining of lips, front surface of tongue became sensitive. A mild burning sensation persists all along. Feel highly hot while eating cooked staffs even though nominal chilly is used. Please advice.
Hello I have bad breath problem. I have put a cap for one teeth n fillings to 4 teeth I immediately get a bad breath after brushing may be after 1 hour how can I get solution to my problem.
I am 18 years old male and have teeth sensitivity for last 2 months. I have uses colgate toothpaste for couple of days but haven't got any relief. What I do?
I am 27 years male, my teeth broken easily when chewing roti and I have cavity problem. I already finish capping in my left side chewing teeth by completing root-canal. How to take care after this and by using which thing I got anti-cavity protection in my teeth.
In morning while brushing my teeth's blood stains can be seen from mucus (thick saliva). Why does this happens? N how to get rid of it?
Sir I have a bad set of teeth. My age is 46 female. I extracted 4 teeth and other teeth are shaking while eating. I have sensitive teeth also.
One warning that most children would have heard from their parent or other elders is, 'don’t eat chocolates, your teeth will get decayed'. And, most children grow up believing this to be true. As this is a global statement thus, more and more research has been done to clarify this. (Learn more to maintain Oral Health in Children)
Let us understand in brief the basic process of tooth decay. The tooth is made of mineralized layer called the enamel that is covered constantly with saliva. There are thousands of bacteria in the mouth. Food substances gradually deposit on the teeth and form plaque (learn more about plaque problem). This combination of a moist environment and bacteria on a mineralized structure produces the ideal environment for bacteria to act and produce acids which break down the minerals in the enamel. This is the first step in the origin of decay. The acid produced attracts more bacteria which further leads to worsening of the decay.
Some of the facts correlating chocolates and tooth decay are as follows:
- Chocolates in particular do not cause tooth decay. Very often, children tend to eat chocolates in between their meals and do not rinse or brush. This leads to greater level of plaque formation, thereby, starting off the process of decay. Not just chocolates any sticky foods can lead to tooth decay. What needs to be enforced is a habit to brush or at the least rinse thoroughly after eating a chocolate bar. In fact, this could be used as a reward, and it can help food deposits formed from other foods also to be washed away. The child gets to eat a chocolate, and good oral hygiene is reinforced too!
- Eating a chocolate before the actual meal is a way to indulge. What happens is that there is no sticky residue on the teeth if eaten this way. The child gets to enjoy chocolate at the same time keeping the teeth away from decay.
- Another habit is to make sure that the child eats all of chocolate at one shot than to keep nibbling at it for hours. That way, the chocolate can be managed with one round of brushing or rinsing
- it is advisable to give the child their share of chocolate at night, as most kids brush teeth before going to bed.
- Dark chocolates contain a good amount of antioxidants and are believed to reduce the incidence of plaque formation and therefore, they counter the effect of acids produced by the bacteria.
So, the next time someone talks about chocolates causing all the tooth decay, tell them it is not that bad, you can have your chocolate and eat it too!!