West Cobb Dentistry Explain Common Causes and Prevention Methods of Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is the softening of your tooth enamel and refers to the damage of the structure of the tooth caused by acids that are created when plaque bacteria break down sugar in your mouth. If this loss of mineral from the enamel is left untreated, a cavity, or hole in the tooth, can eventually occur. Without treatment, these holes can grow larger over time and may even destroy the whole tooth.โ€ฏThe plaque acids can also eat away at the next layer of the tooth (dentin) and eventually cause what is known as a root cavity. As a result, nerves in your teeth become exposed and you may feel pain when you eat or drink. If you feel pain near the root of your tooth, chances are you may have some form of tooth decay and should consult with a dentist in Kennesaw, GA.

What Causes Tooth Decay

As with any oral or general health concern, there are a number of underlying causes of tooth decay. Below are just a few of the most common things that can erode and damage your teeth over time, particularly if you are not properly caring for them.


There are hundreds of different types of bacteria found on your teeth. They live in the grooves and crevices found on the tooth surface. They can even stick to the smooth surfaces of your teeth, like along the gum line. The “scum” that you can feel or see on your teeth after a long day is made up of bacteria and the sticky glue-like substances that they make. This is called plaque. When the bacteria in plaque are exposed to carbohydrates – from your meal – they soak it up and begin to eat, reproduce, and make acid as a by-product. The acid is the worst news – this acid can eat away at your tooth surface if the conditions are right.

Is Sugar the Culprit?

Not exactly. Ask any dental care professional in the field, sugar does not decay teeth. Do not blame sugar, but instead blame the streptococcus bacteria that live inside your mouth in biofilms called plaque. These bacteria feed on carbohydrates and exude harmful acids that destroy the calcium layer that cover your teeth. Saliva can neutralize the acid but when the mouth gets too much of acidic, the teeth get demineralized and rot. In this light, even bread and other carbohydrates stand on equal footing with sugar in relation to our teeth.

How Can You Prevent Tooth Decay

Brushing More Often

Just because your dentist says to brush twice a day doesn’t mean you have to stop there. One great way to prevent the formation of plaque that causes cavities is to brush after every meal or snack. This is the golden rule of oral hygiene. Brushing after you eat or drink with a fluoride-based toothpaste can help keep your teeth clean and free of plaque that leads to tooth decay and cavities.โ€ฏ

Limit Your Intake Of Sugary Foods & Drinks

Candy, sodas and other sugary foods contain sugars that help plaque-forming bacteria survive in your mouth. In addition, sugary foods or candies that stay in your mouth for longer periods of time can also have a greater impact in the formation of plaque and tooth decay. If you do indulge, brush your teeth after eating to help prevent the progression of tooth decay.

Preventative Cleaning From A West Cobb County Dentist

At West Cobb Dentistry, we value our patient relationships, making it our priority to deliver gentle compassionate care that you deserve from a dentist in Kennesaw, GA. Give us a call on (770) 794-3332 or visit our website: https://westcobbdentistry.com/ for information

West Cobb Dentistry

5255 Stilesboro Rd NW #150,
Kennesaw, GA 30152
(770) 794-3332

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