Tooth decay is the most common disease in humans and it starts from the moment the teeth poke through the gum. It can start when teeth rub together, where there is a lack of adequate food reaching the teeth, areas of decline, grooves and fissures present, interproximal surfaces in inaccessible places, crowding, etc. These are all issues where you start accumulating plaque and that is the main reason for tooth decay. Plaque is formed during the rest phases from decanting food debris dissolved in saliva (especially refined carbohydrates), which, together with dead cells and fibers, are suitable in forming a biofilm of bacteria. Family Dentists in Neenah WI will tell you that the prevention of plaque is one of the main reasons to come in for bi-annual checkups.
These visits are to ensure that bacteria do not to establish, proliferate and multiply to exponential numbers. These bacteria convert the fermentation producing biofilm that cause increased acidity (which is primarily responsible for lactic acid). Acids have high avidity for salt and tend to dissolve enamel. Teeth are made of mineral salts and when they come in contact with acids, they will dissolve more or less quickly. And so begins the decay. The caries progression is variable and depends on several factors:
- Initial hardness of the enamel and / or dentin. Teeth are not equally mineralized;
- Composition of saliva. More acidic, easier caries;
- Eating habits. Softer, more acidic, sweeter, more cavities; and
- Dental hygiene. If correct, it may slow down and even stop the decay. It, along with the type of diet, is the main weapon against cavities.
Since decay starts and hammers through the enamel, you have a while until cavities pierce through to the root. However, watch out, sometimes the appearance is very deceiving. Cavities look like a tiny speck, varying in color, which can hide deep without pain or sensitivity. Once through the enamel, dentin progression is much faster and moves toward the dental pulp, in most cases without any discomfort. Pain hits when it is usually too late, especially if it affects the pulp (nerve). This leads, in most cases, to Endodontic procedures.
Family Dentists Neenah WI – have the technology available to handle every type of caries issue known. It is important that you never wait to go to the dentist, especially if you are in pain.