Cartoon of a young man holding dental tools to facilitate good oral hygiene. at dentist in hermitage

Where Are All of These Cavities Coming From?

March 20, 2023 4:30 pm

No one likes hearing they have a cavity. If you’re getting frequent cavities, you might be wondering why. Where do cavities even come from? And what can you do to prevent them?

What Are Cavities?

Cavities are tooth decay. They first appear as tiny holes on the surface of your tooth enamel. If they’re not treated, cavities get bigger and reach the inside of your tooth and the root. They eventually cause sensitivity, pain, infection, and even tooth loss.

Where Do Cavities Come From?

Your mouth is full of bacteria. Plaque, which is a sticky film of bacteria, is always forming on your teeth. When you eat or drink anything with sugar and carbs, it feeds the bacteria in plaque. This produces acid, which chews at your tooth enamel and creates a cavity. Saliva is the mouth’s natural plaque fighter, but plaque is also removed when you brush and floss. If you have dry mouth, poor oral hygiene, or consume a sugar-heavy diet, you may get frequent cavities.

How Do You Prevent Cavities?

Consistent brushing and flossing are essential to preventing cavities. You should also get professional cleanings and exams at the dentist at least twice a year. Dental hygienists remove tartar (which is hardened plaque) and dentists identify cavities before they show symptoms. We can even catch demineralization, which happens right before a cavity forms. Treatments like fluoride and improved oral hygiene can reverse the demineralization process and stop a cavity in its tracks.

Treating Cavities at Hermitage Family & Cosmetic Dentistry in Hermitage, TN

Most people get at least a few cavities during their lifetime, but if you’re getting lots of cavities, our dentists can recommend lifestyle changes. Besides professional hygiene cleanings, we also offer cavity prevention treatments like dental sealants and fluoride treatments. And if in spite of your best efforts you get a cavity, we have tooth-colored fillings and dental crowns. If you have questions about cavities or want to schedule an appointment, please contact our office today!

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