Essentially, tooth decay has one primary cause: the behavior of bacteria on your teeth. The bacteria convert sugar and starch on your teeth into an acidic waste compound. The bacteria, acid, saliva and food debris all combine to form dental plaque, which clings to your teeth. The acid in plaque eats away at your tooth enamel, forming a cavity. Cavities can be treated with dental fillings early on.
Although bacteria are the root cause of cavities, certain things can increase the risk of cavities:
- Frequent snacking on sugary, sticky and starchy foods.
- Poor oral hygiene.
- Chronic dry mouth, which can be caused by certain medications and creates an ideal environment for the bacteria on your teeth.
Practicing good dental hygiene and teeth cleaning reduces the number of bacteria on your teeth and prevents cavities as a result. Our dentists can recommend ways to improve your current dental hygiene routine, such as remembering to floss once a day. Visiting our dentists for a cleaning and exam is also essential to removing hardened plaque and catching cavities in their early stages.
If you are searching for an experienced dentist near Fairfax or the surrounding areas, please contact Galleria Dental Aesthetics to learn more about us and to schedule an appointment.