The difference between tooth decay and a cavity is that one is a condition and the other is a symptom. A cavity is the depression left in your tooth once the structure starts to decay, which is a process caused by certain types of oral bacteria overwhelming your teeth. Fortunately, both tooth decay and the development of cavities are highly preventable with the right level of care and maintenance. Today, we examine how, and help boost your chances of keeping a tooth from decaying by exploring the most effective ways to prevent it.
Preventing the process before it starts
You’ve always heard that prevention is the best medicine, and that’s especially true for the health of your teeth. When it comes to cavity development, the main culprits are found in the plaque that builds up on your teeth’s surfaces. Certain oral bacteria can create acids that weaken the protective enamel around your teeth, and before long, the bacteria themselves can reach and infect the main tooth structure. Once this process begins, it will continue until it’s treated. Therefore, the best way to preserve all of your healthy, natural tooth structure is to prevent it by consistently cleaning oral bacteria off of your teeth.
The intricacies of preventing tooth decay
Keeping your teeth clean sounds simple, and for the most part, it is. However, your teeth can only remain clean if you brush and floss them consistently. It doesn’t take long for plaque to harden into tartar and, in the process, become insoluble. Once it does, your toothpaste and water won’t be enough to remove it. This need for consistency is often the weakest link in many people’s dental hygiene routines. It can be far too easy to skip brushing once or twice now and again when you’re in a rush, or to avoid visiting the dentist as often as recommended.
Prevention on a consistent basis
The lack of consistency in many people’s hygiene routines may be one of the biggest factors in why highly preventable issues like tooth decay are so common. Even if you stick to your hygiene routine diligently after skipping it once or twice, the danger of tartar calcification may already be a factor. Fortunately, you can successfully remove tartar from your teeth at a professional dental cleaning appointment, during which your dentist or hygienist will use professional equipment to carefully remove all traces of plaque and tartar from your teeth.
Learn how to prevent your tooth from decaying
Tooth decay is common for several reasons, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t also preventable. To learn more about how to keep your tooth from decay, or to schedule a consultation, call Cedar Dental in Cedar Rapids, IA, today at (319) 364-7108.