When Tooth Decay Turns Deadly
Everybody does it, so what harm can there be? At least that’s what you tell yourself when you skip your pre-bedtime tooth brushing routine or miss one of your bi-annual visits to the dentist. Skipping out on your dental care routine can be a costly venture, and the charge is more than missing teeth—you could end up paying with your life. Research has shown that tooth decay is among the first obvious signs of disease, raising your risk of heart and lung disease and diabetes. In fact, one study showed that inconsistent dental care habits can increase heart disease risk by as much as 70 percent. If you want to protect the health of your teeth—and your heart—follow these tips for preventing tooth decay and other oral health problems.
Before you worry about all the nights you fell asleep without a giving a second thought to heading to the bathroom to brush your teeth, remember that it’s easy to practice good dental care habits. Just brush twice a day, rinse with fluoride mouthwash, floss once a day, and visit an affordable dentist in Abingdon every six months. Now that you know that it’s simple to practice proper dental care, you need to know exactly what happens when tooth decay occurs.
If your teeth are not kept free of bacteria and plaque, a cavity—which is simply a hole—will develop in one or more of your teeth. Cavities are the result of preventable events. For example, bacteria in the mouth convert trapped food debris into acid. Then the acid and bacteria combine with the particles of food and saliva to form plaque. Plaque is the sticky substance that initiates tooth decay, and is filled with acids that erode the enamel on your teeth, creating cavities. Remember, if you don’t brush and rinse after every meal, plaque can start to build up within 20 minutes of eating.
Luckily, there are treatments for cavities and dental care techniques for fighting bacteria, plaque, and acid before they can cause any more harm.
If you have a small cavity, your family dentistry practitioner will remove the decayed portion of the tooth and restore it with a filling.
For larger cavities, your dentist in Abingdon will place a crown, also called a cap, over the tooth to restore it to its normal shape and size.
If tooth decay spreads to the tooth pulp and becomes infected, it will require a root canal—the removal of the pulp and nerve, followed by sealing the roots.
Dental Care Technology
Cavity prevention products are being designed that will find and treat tooth decay very early. A special fluorescent light is being developed that can locate the beginning stages of decay. A “smart filling” is being worked on, which will time-release fluoride to prevent further tooth decay.
Don’t Miss Brushing
Skipping brushing can led to an accumulation of plaque, especially at night, when saliva activity is low.
If your mouth feels dry, drink water. Clean fluids, like water and saliva, can help to wash away bacteria in your mouth, preventing tooth decay.
Monitor Your Diet
Be aware that starchy, refined carbs can do just as much dental damage as sugary foods.
To learn about our family dentistry practice in Abingdon, call Dental One Associates of Bel Air today at (410) 698-1674 or make an appointment.
Dental One Associates offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Abingdon. With 11 affiliated practices throughout Maryland, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Dental One Associates of Bel Air, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Dental One Associates of Bel Air.