Top 5 Causes of Tooth Decay

Dentist-in-Charlotte-NCTooth decay, also known as dental caries or cavities, can cause lots of uncomfortable and inconvenient problems for you.  It can become painful and can leave you facing unexpected expenses.  Your dentist in Charlotte NC can check your teeth for cavities and help you to understand how to prevent them.  Let’s take a look at the top 5 causes of tooth decay:

1. Poor Oral Hygiene

We all know that we should brush and floss our teeth, but do you know why?  Having good oral hygiene helps keep plaque levels down.  When plaque sits on our teeth for long periods of time, it becomes destructive.  Brushing and flossing daily removes this plaque and helps prevent tooth decay.

2.  Frequency of Sugars and Acids

Almost everything we eat and drink has sugars or acids in them.  After we eat or drink something, it takes 20-40 minutes before these sugars and acids stop attacking our teeth.  If you are snacking or sipping on drinks throughout the day, the constant attack on your teeth can lead to a higher rate of tooth decay very quickly.

3. Dry Mouth

Did you know saliva actual helps prevent tooth decay?  It helps to buffer the acids in our mouth and help keep our teeth strong.  Certain medications, chronic alcohol use, smoking, and mouth-breathing can all reduce your salivary flow and lead to an increase in cavities.

4. Pits and Fissures

Some teeth have deep pits and grooves on their surfaces.  These crevices, or fissures, can be a breeding ground for bacteria and cause tooth decay.  During your routine dental visits, your dentist will examine these areas for any signs of decay.

5. Genetics

Some people are more likely to get decay than others.  Talk to your family members to learn more about their history with tooth decay.  If your family appears to be particularly sensitive to tooth decay, you should talk to your dentist about the best ways to fight the problem.

Having regular checkups with your pediatric dentist in Charlotte NC is the first step in avoiding tooth decay. To learn more, call to schedule your visit today.