Despite its prevalence, we don’t want any patient to think they’re destined for tooth decay, even if they’ve had a hard time avoiding it in the past. There are a lot of factors that contribute to your oral health, but be assured that at our practice you’re in the hands of compassionate decay prevention experts.
Anyone who’s been to the dentist knows we have a lot more tools than just a toothbrush & floss for caring for your teeth. In addition to removing plaque, our arsenal of hand tools & handpieces are designed to remove hardened deposits called tartar or calculus that are hard for you to remove yourself using just a toothbrush & floss. During a cleaning visit, we also check your teeth thoroughly for existing signs of decay. If we find a problem, we will talk to you about fixing it as soon as possible with a filling, a crown, or another treatment if the decay is more severe. Of course, our favourite outcome is when we find no decay at all. Understanding how decay starts is a great way to solidify your understanding of how to prevent it.
What Is Tooth Decay?
Statistically speaking, tooth decay could be considered the second most common illness humans suffer from (number one is the common cold). If left untreated, tooth decay can lead to pain & more severe problems such as abscesses or systemic infections, not to mention tooth loss. Data indicates that almost every adult has had tooth decay at some point. Our goal is to reverse this trend, at the very least in our local community. Educating our patients about how tooth decay happens & how to prevent it is how we hope to accomplish this.
One myth seems to have emerged from how we were taught about tooth decay & cavities as children: avoid sugar & you can avoid cavities. The reality is there is no single thing you can do to prevent tooth decay. Rather, preventing cavities is a collection of good habits, maintenance & professional attention. The steps for a decay-free smile, in no particular order, are a healthy diet, a thorough daily hygiene routine & seeing us regularly for teeth cleanings & checkups.