Diagnosis, Treatment & Prevention With Our Castro Valley Dentist
Tooth decay is gradual damage to the many components of your teeth caused by acid-forming bacteria present in your mouth. These bacteria can literally break down your teeth and, if not removed, can create tartar cavities, painful infections, and abscesses (pockets of infected pus) within nearby gum tissue. Over time, tooth decay can lead to tooth loss.
Tooth decay (as well as gum disease) has even been linked to other health problems such as heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease. This is thought to be caused by bacteria and infections entering the bloodstream via decaying teeth and gums. For this reason, taking care of your oral health is literally good for your entire body, and not just your teeth and gums!
Top Signs & Symptoms of Tooth Decay
How can you tell if you or a loved one has tooth decay? Here are some of the most common symptoms and signs:
- Broken, loose, and/or discolored teeth
- Bad breath
There may even be no symptoms at all! The only way to know for sure if you do or don’t have tooth decay is to have your teeth examined by a dentist.
How to Prevent Tooth Decay
Brush and floss your teeth regularly!
The bacteria in your mouth (found in a clear sticky substance called plaque) feed on sugars you eat. As a by-product, these bacteria produce acid which can break down your teeth for 20+ minutes after you finish a meal. Brushing your teeth after each meal and flossing daily are two of the best ways to reduce your risk of this common oral health problem.
Avoid eating sugary foods.
Bacteria love sugar! Refined carbohydrates (including pasta, bread, and candy) can stimulate an even greater amount of tooth-wrecking acid and plaque build-up.
Quit smoking, or never start.
Smoking promotes inflammation, damages cells, and can increase your risk of infection in your mouth and elsewhere in the body.
Manage your underlying health conditions well.
Having chronic health problems like diabetes can increase your risk of tooth decay. Talk to your doctor about ways you can better manage your current health problems.
Our Family Dentist in Castro Valley Can Treat & Prevent Tooth Decay
At Redwood Canyon Dentistry, preventing tooth decay is one of our main goals as a leading dental team in Castro Valley. If you or a loved one needs help improving your dental health, we encourage you to schedule an appointment. We can prevent tooth decay by teaching you how to floss and by performing a deep clean of your teeth and gums on a routine basis. If tooth decay is present, we can do everything from fill and seal cavities (using dental fillings) to remove decayed teeth to prevent the spread of infection.