What is Tooth Decay?
Tooth decay is the softening of your tooth enamel. This is caused by the erosion of acids produced by plaque and bacteria. These acids eat away at your tooth enamel, causing mineral loss. Without treatment, decay can lead to the formation of a small pit in your tooth, also known as a cavity. Cavities continue to grow larger the longer they go untreated and can compromise the strength of the affected tooth as well as your oral health. If you have developed tooth decay, Anchorage Dental Associates can help.
Causes of Tooth Decay
There are several issues that can lead to tooth decay. These include:
Symptoms of Decay and Cavities
As decay develops, your tooth enamel weakens. This leads to the formation of a white spot on your tooth. As it continues to progress, you may begin to notice symptoms of cavity formation. These symptoms include:
How is Tooth Decay Treated?
The early stages of decay are reversible. You can reverse tooth decay by improving your oral hygiene routine and using a fluoridated toothpaste. We can also help to reverse early decay with topical fluoride treatments.
If tooth decay has developed into a cavity, the damage is irreversible. It can get worse the longer it goes untreated. Treatments for cavities depend upon their severity and include:
Preventing Tooth Decay
There are things that you can do to prevent the formation of tooth decay. One of the biggest things that you can do is maintain a good oral hygiene routine. You should brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day. Use a fluoridated toothpaste and mouthwash. You should have your teeth professionally cleaned and examined twice a year. Also, eat a healthy, well-balanced diet and limit your consumption of sweets and carbohydrates.
The earlier tooth decay is detected, the easier it is to treat. If you suspect tooth decay in your tooth, call Anchorage Dental Associates at (907) 276-7366 to schedule your appointment today.
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