Tooth decay can occur when acid is produced from plaque, which builds up on your teeth.If plaque is allowed to build up, it can lead to further problems, such as dental caries (holes in the teeth), gum disease or dental abscesses, which are collections of pus at the end of the teeth or in the gums.Tooth decay may not cause any pain. However, if you have dental caries you might have:
toothache – either continuous pain keeping you awake or occasional sharp pain without an obvious cause
tooth sensitivity – you may feel tenderness or pain when eating or drinking something hot, cold or sweet
grey, brown or black spots appearing on your teeth
an unpleasant taste in your mouth
HOW IS TOOTH DECAY DIAGNOSED?
The dentist can diagnose cavities by examining the tooth surface and by taking an x-ray to see if the cavity has gone from the enamel into the dentin or pulp of the tooth.
HOW IS TOOTH DECAY TREATED?
In adults, dentists can apply sealants on molars that have early signs of tooth decay, as long as the decay has not broken through the enamel. Once the enamel has been irreversibly compromised, your dentist will have to fill the tooth. In more serious cases, a root canal may be necessary.
In children, both baby molars and permanent molars can be sealed. Dentists can also apply fluoride varnish on both primary and permanent teeth to protect them from decay.
DID YOU KNOW?
The best way to avoid tooth decay is to keep your teeth and gums as healthy as possible. One should visit your dentist regularly,cut down on sugary and starchy food and drinks,look after your teeth and gums and avoid smoking or drinking alcohol excessively