An Insight Into Tooth Decay – Prevention is Better Than Cure

Dentists from all parts of the country are reporting the same – there is a rise in the number of people who are visiting them every month, and a major share of them suffered from the tooth decaying problems. However, how can the tooth decay? I mean we all have the generalized notion that the tooth is very tough and will not fall prone to any kind of decaying activities. Here is a news flash, the tooth will decay and in the succeeding passages, I will try to outline certain tooth decaying procedures and how should one go about preventing them.

There is a tough coating on the surface of the tooth. This coating is otherwise termed as enamel. Even though this enamel is considered to be tough, there are certain times when the affectivity of the same will be put to test. The mouth must be cleaned properly and this is done to remove traces of food materials. Acidic food materials, when left in the mouth will react with the enamel of the tooth. In the due course of time, the enamel will give away and the inner aspects of the teeth will be exposed. Need I say more?

Excessive brushing, likewise, will eliminate the enamel coating. According to dentists, the teeth must be cleaned after every meal to dislodge the food materials that are stuck in between the teeth. Instead of sticking with this principle, a small share of the population will resort to frequent brushing of their teeth. Recent studies conducted in the niche have proven that frequent brushing of the teeth will erode the upper layers of the enamel. Brushing of the teeth is good. Also, ensure that you stick within the limits. Else you are simply inviting problems such as decaying of the tooth.

Keep the mouth clean – this is the best way to escape from the perils of tooth decay. Brushing the teeth with a toothbrush and toothpaste, flossing in between the teeth and cleaning the tongue – these are the elementary steps that are advertised by dentists in order to ensure high oral hygiene levels. If viable, it is better to avoid sugary and sweetened food materials, especially when you are away from your toothbrush for extended time. People indulge in soft drinks, ice creams and chocolate when they are hanging out with their friends.

By the time they reach back home and start cleaning the teeth, the damage will be visible. If the paradigm is repeated, within years they will have to pay dearly for the same. Sometimes the gum might start decaying – this will loosen the tooth and will result in bad breaths. This can be caused by minor injuries within the mouth. The mouth houses many toxic bacteria, and if these bacteria are given a chance to play havoc in your mouth, then you are going to repent for the rest of the days. As mentioned in the title of this article, prevention is indeed better than cure!

Gingivitis – Symptoms & Prevention

One of the most common dental conditions is plaque-induced gingivitis. Gingivitis is often evidenced by swollen gums (or “gingiva”) that almost look like they’re going to bleed at some point. Being a periodontal disease, gingivitis destroys gum tissues that surround and support the teeth – also taking the collateral damage are the periodontal ligaments and the tooth sockets. Unattended and untreated gingivitis may lead to a more severe condition called “periodontitis”, which often leads to the loosening of teeth and ultimately, sudden tooth loss.

Symptoms of gingivitis include:

1. Swollen gums, tender and reddish/blackish gums.

2. Bleeding gums (try softly brushing your teeth and check your toothbrush for blood).

3. Pus (or in medical terms, abscess) around the teeth.

4. Bad breath or halitosis

5. Yellowish teeth caused by tartar buildup

6. Bitter sense of taste

7. Sensitive gums

8. Frequent gum ulcers

Over time, large deposits of plaque will accumulate in the teeth if one doesn’t brush regularly. Plaque, in its pure form, is a transparent, sticky material comprised of all the dirt accumulated in the mouth as we eat. When that plaque hardens, it becomes tartar or “calculus”. Teeth with tartar are clearly distinct from healthy teeth because of the yellow/brownish pigmentation of tartar-stricken teeth. And removal of tartar is no simple task – a dentist/hygienist will have to scrape it off entirely. But the good news is that plaque buildup can easily be prevented by brushing and flossing the teeth to rid the mouth of food debris and bacteria.

But plaque does not solely cause gingivitis.

Other medical conditions may trigger the onset of the periodontal disease:

1. Poorly fitted mouth braces, dentures, amalgam/composite fillings and other dental appliances.

2. Puberty – on the onset of the menstrual cycle for females

3. Pregnancy – due to body’s radical hormonal response to dental plaque

4. Diabetes – due to insufficient blood sugar control and blood regulation.

5. Leukemia – due to the body’s weakened state of blood regulation, it cannot easily fight bacteria buildup in the teeth.

6. Malnutrition – triggers a chain effect of other medical conditions caused by vitamin and mineral deficiencies.

7. Scurvy – often caused by little or no fruits and vegetables in one’s diet.

8. Pellagra – caused by Vitamin B3 deficiency. Niacin is the one responsible in regulating hormones and blood circulation.

The most proven ways to prevent gingivitis and to bring back your gums back to their once healthy state is by:

1. Brush your teeth on a daily basis. Use toothpastes with high concentrations of fluoride.

2. Floss in between your teeth after you are done brushing.

3. Gargle with dentist-recommended mouthwash to prevent plaque buildup and to eliminate bacteria.

4. Don’t smoke. Smoking compromises almost every major body organ and also the skeletal structure.

5. Reduce alcohol intake.

6. Avoid eating sugary foods and junk foods.

And more importantly, see your dentist at least twice a year to know what other kinds of preventive measures you can incorporate into your oral hygiene. Gingivitis is an unsightly condition, so one should always be protective of his/her teeth and gums and always follow the dentist’s advice.