Tooth Decay

What is it?

Tooth decay is the destruction of the tooth structure. It can affect both the enamel (the outer layer) and the dentin (the inner layer) of the tooth.

Tooth decay occurs when foods containing carbohydrates (such as breads, cereals, milk, soda, fruits, cakes, or candy) are left on the teeth. Bacteria that live in the mouth digest these foods, turning them into acids. which can dissolve the enamel surface of the teeth, creating holes in the teeth called cavities, or caries.

Who Gets Cavities?

Many people think cavities only affect children, but changes that occur with aging make cavities an adult problem too. Recession of the gums (a pulling away of gum tissue from the teeth), can expose tooth roots to plaque. Decay can also occur around the edges of fillings. Also, if you are a diabetic and suffer from dry mouth, you might have a higher risk of developing tooth decay.

How Do I Know if I Have a Cavity?

We can discover cavities during your regular dental check-up. The tooth surface feels soft when probed with a dental instrument. X-rays can also show cavities between teeth before they become visible to the eye.