Causes of Tooth Decay

Causes of Tooth DecayAlthough tooth decay is highly preventable, it continues to affect both adults and children. In fact, dental caries is the most common chronic childhood disorder and affects the majority of children between the ages of 6 and 19. A shocking 90 percent of adults also have some degree of dental decay. Our dentist in Torrance recommends the right balance of good dental hygiene, regular professional cleanings and routine dental exams in order to prevent tooth decay and maintain good dental health.

Tooth decay begins when the bacteria that live naturally in your mouth begin to break down the sugars in the foods you eat. They form a white, sticky substance called plaque. The acidic byproduct of the bacteria then wears down the dental enamel in a process called demineralization. Plaque tends to accumulate along the gumline and can be more difficult to remove from the chewing surfaces from teeth, which means those two locations are more vulnerable to cavities.

You can protect yourself from tooth decay by brushing your teeth twice daily and flossing every day. Use fluoridated toothpaste, which can help your teeth remineralize more quickly, and an antimicrobial mouth rinse to kill additional bacteria. Routine checkups every six months can catch dental decay at its earliest when it has done little damage and can be easily treated. Dental decay that is not treated may need to be evaluated by our specialist for root canal therapy in Torrance, who may be able save the tooth using a root canal treatment or other therapies.

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