Oral Health

Plaque, Not Just Sugar, Causes Stubborn Cavities

It is a common belief most people have known since childhood: eating too much sweets will rot your teeth. Whilst it is true that a diet filled with lollies and sweet treats increases your risks for cavities, however, sugar itself is not the main cause behind tooth decay.

A Closer Look at Dental Cavities

tooth decayDental cavities form due to bacteria residing in the mouth digesting the carbohydrates from the food you eat. Food debris does include refined sugars found in cakes, cookies and other sweets, but it is also present in healthier food choices, such as vegetables, fruits and grains.

When your mouth digests these carbohydrates, it produces acid that combines with your saliva. As a result, plaque develops and eventually damages your teeth.

Plaque—the Leading Cause of Tooth Decay

Plaque, not sugar, heralds the damaging effects of tooth decay in your mouth. During each meal, you subject your mouth to plaque formation, especially if you do not brush frequently. Plaque can damage the enamel (also known as the protective film of your teeth) and affect the dentin, which are the pulp containing blood vessels and nerves.

Cavities from plaque affect the dentin and the bone supporting your teeth. This leads to stinging sensations, severe toothaches and gum diseases in the future.

Be Mindful of Food

Whilst sugar is not the main cause of your tooth woes, it is still a cavity-causing carbohydrate. After all, the type of food you eat plays an important role in your oral health.

Food such as breath mints and dry cereal can get stuck in the crevices of your teeth, which cause decay. Rather than indulge in hard candy and raisins, settle for an apple or yogurt. Both food items easily wash away with saliva and are unlikely to cause stubborn plaque.

Apart from the food you eat, how you consume food also affects your oral health. For example, it is better to sip fizzy drinks rather than consume them straight from the can. This is because the drink’s acid remains in your mouth for at least 30 minutes, which leads to plaque development.

Love your teeth more by taking additional precautions with what you eat. Here at Denchic Dental Spa, we can help keep your teeth plaque-free and looking its best anytime, anywhere. Get in touch with us now.

Sensitive and Yellowing Teeth – Signs of Poor Enamel

Teeth stains and painful sensations in the gum area are common problems. These are among the symptoms of dental erosion, a recurring problem in the UK.

What is it?

dental erosionDental erosion is the progressive deterioration of the teeth’s enamel, the hard material that protects teeth from hard impact and bacteria. Certain elements cause it to wear and tear, eventually exposing the vulnerable dentine. This leads to discomfort, discolouration and even loss of teeth.

Why does it happen?

Enamel erosion usually occurs due to frequent acid attacks. These may come from poor diet and certain conditions.

Acidic food and drinks may weaken and break the enamel in the long run. Tea, coffee, fruity and fizzy drinks are some examples of acidic substances. The same goes for foods that contain generous amounts of sugar and starch.

People with existing conditions tend to suffer dental erosion as well. Acid reflux and gastrointestinal problems prompt acid attacks, leading to enamel deterioration. Those with dry mouth are prone to dental erosion as well because they do not have enough saliva to wash the acid away.

Poor oral hygiene and habits may lead to enamel erosion. Those who do not brush or floss their teeth properly tend to have weaker enamel. Excessive clenching and crunching of teeth may cause them to chip and crack as well.

Some people experience dental erosion at birth whilst some acquire it through environmental factors. Constant stress and anxiety cause people to grind their teeth excessively, putting pressure on the enamel. Certain medications like acidic supplements, aspirin and antihistamines may also cause dental erosion.

Prevention and Treatment

Proper oral hygiene and diet are essential in countering enamel erosion. People should brush and floss their teeth at least once a day. Less consumption of acidic food and drinks is necessary especially for those with advanced stages of dental erosion. Increased intake of water may help in countering acidic substances. Regular dental appointments will help prevent or reduce the effects and symptoms of dental erosion more effectively.

At Denchic Dental Spa, we can help you deal with dental erosion. We provide general dentistry services, teeth whitening and other treatments that will improve your teeth. We are committed to delivering healthier and brighter smiles that you rightly deserve.

Click here for more information on our treatments.

The Attack of Plaque

Leftover food particles allow the bacteria in your mouth to multiply and form plaque. This sticky substance that builds up on teeth contains acid that can wear away enamel and cause cavities. Plaque can also harden and compromise your teeth, gums and overall oral health.

The Formation

oral healthPlaque forms due to the chemical reactions that happen in your mouth. Bacteria, food particles, carbohydrates and saliva are all responsible for creating plaque. If you frequently eat foods with higher sugar content, you are more likely to have plaque. The first stage of formation happens while you chew or break down food into carbohydrates.

Carbohydrates combine with the bacteria in your mouth to create acid. The acid then eats away enamel and combines with leftover food particles and saliva. At this stage, another chemical reaction occurs and forms a new substance called plaque.

The Solidification

As plaque builds up on your teeth, it can cause bad breath and make your teeth turn yellow. If you do not brush properly after meals, this sticky film will turn into a substance called tartar, which needs to be scraped off your teeth. Once the tartar forms, it will be more difficult to brush and floss your teeth effectively.

You only have a limited time to remove plaque before it hardens. Most of it usually hardens within 48 hours of formation, and within several days, it will be so hard and impossible to remove. The only way to get rid of it is to see your dentist so they can scrape it off your teeth.

The Prevention

It is easier to prevent plaque with regular brushing and flossing. These activities remove loose food particles that contribute to the development of plaque. Make sure that you brush your teeth in two directions so you can remove all the plaque that forms on the surface.

It is also a good idea to pay attention to your diet. Plaque thrives with sugar and carbohydrates, so it is best to avoid cookies, candies and sugary foods. As it not possible to avoid all carbohydrates, make sure to choose healthy foods and brush your teeth after meals.

Do not let plaque lead to cavities and tooth decay. Follow a strict oral regimen and visit your dentist for regular cleaning. Browse through our website today and find out how we can help you feel confident about your smile and oral health.