Our teeth are very important to us. Not only do they enable us to talk and eat properly, but they also act as rigid support for facial structure. However, our teeth are constantly under attack from bacteria and plaque, which can erode the protective layer of tooth enamel and cause problems with our teeth.
Plaque is a filmy substance that sticks to the surface of the teeth. It contains a large amount of bacteria, which feed on food particles that are trapped in the mouth, especially sugar and starch that is contained in sweet food. When this bacteria begins to break down it releases acids, which cause the tooth enamel to disintegrate.
When this starts to happen, holes begin to develop in the tooth enamel called cavities. If these holes continue to grow they will eventually penetrate through the enamel and into the more sensitive inner part of the tooth. Once this has happened, the dental nerve and pulp at the tooth’s centre are exposed to plaque, bacteria and dental infection. This can be painful and unpleasant and will eventually lead to the destruction of the tooth.
Thankfully, dental decay is easily prevented with a strict and efficient regime of dental hygiene. This involves brushing and flossing twice a day for the recommended amount of time. This will help to remove bacteria from the teeth before it has the chance to cause any significant problems. It is also possible to treat dental decay at various stages with fillings, inlays or dental crowns. These all strengthen the natural defences of the teeth making it harder for plaque to do any damage. Your City of London dentist is also instrumental in helping you avoid dental decay, as they are usually the first people who will notice that your teeth are suffering.