5 Causes of Tooth Decay Everyone Should Know About
Dental decay is the result of bacteria breaking down the enamel on your teeth. There are a few factors that can contribute to dental decay. This blog post takes a look at five common causes of dental decay so you can make sure to avoid them.
Sugary Foods and Beverages
Sugary treats are tempting for everyone, but it's important to be aware of the consequences. Eating too much sugar from sweetened foods and drinks can increase your chances of cavities and gum disease substantially. But that does not mean you have to give them up entirely — just remember to brush your teeth soon after having something sugary. It'll help wash away the residue before it causes too much damage.
Insufficient Saliva Production
Saliva helps keep your teeth clean by helping to wash away any food particles that can cause plaque buildup. If you suffer from dry mouth due to certain medications or medical conditions, you could be more prone to developing cavities. Drinking lots of water on a little and often basis can help produce saliva naturally.
Fruits such as oranges and lemons contain high levels of citric acid. This can erode the enamel on your teeth over time if they're eaten too often without brushing afterwards. Eating acidic foods in moderation is fine. Just make sure you take care of your teeth by brushing with toothpaste containing fluoride following the consumption of these foods.
Poor Oral Hygiene
Failing to brush your teeth increases your risk of developing cavities because plaque builds up on the surface of your teeth. Additionally, don't forget to floss regularly, as this helps remove food particles stuck between your teeth in locations that a toothbrush cannot reach.
Tooth grinding, also known as bruxism, can lead to the wearing away of your tooth enamel. If you grind your teeth at night, consult a dentist about getting fitted for a mouth guard to protect your teeth.
It's important for everyone — from children to adults — to be aware of how their lifestyle choices affect their dental health. While brushing and flossing should always be part of any good oral hygiene routine, understanding the causes of tooth decay will help you make informed choices about what you eat and drink, as well as how often you visit your dentist for checkups. Taking these steps now will help to make sure that your smile stays bright. For further advice and info, get in touch with your dentist today.