dental care blog
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You might have heard a lot about tooth decay. Your dentist throws it around and warns you to avoid sugary foods. You may have even seen those threatening posters of tooth decay and how your tooth will fall off. This brings the question of: what exactly is tooth decay? What are the symptoms? And how can you remedy the situation if you suspect you are suffering from one?
What exactly is it?
Tooth decay is the rotting of your tooth caused by the onset of an infection. The infection is due to bacteria. When sugar and food particles get stuck in the gaps insides your mouth, bacteria develops which creates enzymes and acids. These acids corrode teeth.
Around 20% of children are badly affected and three quarters of tooth decay cases affect children. Even adults don't escape it, though. 30-50% of adults over the age of 50 experience tooth decay. Studies have further shown that tooth decay occurs among those who have a high carbohydrate diet and a 'sweet tooth'.
Symptoms of Tooth Decay
The sooner you catch a tooth decay, the better it can be treated. Here are symptoms to look out for.
- The first sign of a new cavity is the appearance of a chalky white spot on the surface of a tooth. The hard covering of a tooth is called enamel and this is a sign that the erosion process has started.
- Slowly, the enamel starts to decay and it spreads to dentin. Dentin is a soft tissue below the hard covering of the tooth. Once the enamel is lost, it will not regenerate. You will notice a hollowness in your tooth.
- From the dentin, the decay reaches dentinal tubules which connected to the tooth's nerve in the gums. This is when you start feeling a terrible toothache.
- Your breath smells sour.
- There is a foul taste in your mouth.
- There are severe cases where the infection spreads throughout the mouth and other parts of the body's tissue.
Treatment for Tooth Decay
A tooth decay can easily be prevented by brushing your teeth daily, flossing and not eating too many sweets. Here are your options if you ever find yourself afflicted with tooth decay.
If you have not been affected by tooth decay, take care of your teeth well. As an adult, you get only one set. And visit your dentist regularly for a checkup to ensure tooth decay has not set in!
Call Now: 587 410 5766
Dr. Alexander Yeh and Dr. Iyad Al-Qishawi are registered general dentists. They graduated in the same class at the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Dentistry.
Edmonton Emergency Dental Services:
Pain and infection relief
Phone: 587 410 5766
Address: Suite #110 4445 Calgary Trail Southbound NW, Edmonton, AB T6H5R7