A name, often more familiar than would prefer. You know it appears inside your mouth. You also know that it’s a very frequent “visitor” in our dental colitis. But, do you know how it’s created?
The two stages of spoilage that precede
1) Microbial dental plaque is the colorless sticky membrane of bacteria that sticks to the surface of teeth and passes under the gum line, sticking even to the fillings. It is formed by the bacteria that are normally present in our mouth when they are mixed with proteins and food debris. After each meal and if the plaque is not removed by brushing, its acids attack the teeth and can corrode their enamel.
2) Tartar will be the next stage of the plaque as soon as it solidifies. It is a layer, hard as stone, with yellow or light brown color that is created as minerals accumulate from saliva to the tooth, after the loss of calcium.
And just like that… you get tooth decay: as the tooth has decalcified and the tartar layer attracts more bacteria, a cavity (hole) is formed inside the tooth. As this hole grows, decay worsens and, if not treated in time, can lead to pain when chewing, sensitivity to hot and cold, and even gum problems.
The 5 Don’ts for a tooth decay free mouth
To prevent tooth decay and prevent it from deteriorating in your oral cavity, remember 5 key points:
- Do not neglect your regular dental appointments. These are essential not only when a problem occurs to your teeth and gums but also preventively, for the annual check-up.
- Don’t forget to rinse your mouth with water after consuming sugary snacks and brushing isn’t an option at the time being. It may not ideal, but the water will remove, to a degree, food debris before they form plaque.
- Brushing your teeth at least twice a day is imperative. Every morning and every evening, after your meals, brushing is an effective way to remove plaque and keep tartar and tooth decay at bay.
- Don’t choose just any old toothpaste or mouthwash. The more specialized they are, the more they target plaque & tartar to combat tooth decay.
- Don’t neglect flossing, as it will remove food debris that’s stuck inside your teeth and can cause trouble to your gums and teeth.
And now that you know how tooth decay is caused and how you can avoid it, do not let it get close to your mouth; always an unwelcome visitor.