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Where Do Cavities Come From?

January 23, 2020 3 min read

It’s no secret that the sugary snacks and sweets we like to enjoy play a huge role in the development of painful cavities. Bacteria and acids left behind from the food we eat can dissolve enamel and reach the sensitive pulp tissue. Not only that, but even the gums and root canal around affected teeth can suffer and become inflamed as a result of untreated cavities. It’s best to fully understand how cavities form in order to better protect the teeth and maintain good oral hygiene.

Fermentable Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates play a huge role in our overall health. They supply us with fuel and energy, help protect our bodies from disease, and ensure that all our vital organs are working perfectly. However, some carbohydrates can end up dissolving the tooth and cause plenty of painful cavities.

When we chew starchy or sugary food like bread and potatoes, food residue with lots of carbohydrates can stick and stay on our teeth. Bacteria in our mouths can then break these carbs down and turn them into acid. The carbs that go through this process are known as fermentable carbohydrates.

Acids that form from fermentable carbohydrates can have a detrimental effect on tooth structure and melt away enamel. Without a proper layer of protection, the pulp and nerves inside the affected tooth can become prone to sensitivity and infection. Certain areas of the teeth, such as the grooves and surfaces used for chewing, are especially prone to losing enamel as they have the most contact with these harmful acids.

Some foods that can cause cavities due to high fermentable carbohydrate-content include bread, cereal, pasta, and rice. These starchy foods contain plenty of carbohydrates that can be left behind on the teeth and broken down into acid. Hot drinks that contain plenty of sugar, such as coffee, tea, and hot chocolate, can also leave plenty of carbs behind on the teeth. As for solids, instant meals, desserts, and convenience store food rich in sugar-content can leave behind plenty of food residue and carbs on hard-to-reach areas of the teeth.

Harmful Bacteria

Plaque—a colorless sticky film that usually forms on the teeth and gums—contains plenty of bacteria that can dissolve enamel and significantly weaken teeth. Some common types of bacteria such as Streptococcus mutans can produce harmful organisms that stick to teeth and melt away enamel, thus exposing the inner pulp to infection and disease.

The key to eliminating harmful bacteria from teeth is regularly maintaining proper dental hygiene. Brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice a day can prevent bacteria growth, and ensure that your teeth and gums don’t become environments that can cultivate and nurture bacteria. We also suggest using a dental scaler after brushing to get rid of bacteria that may be clinging to the gum line and hard-to-reach areas of the teeth.

It’s also best to be careful when eating food with plenty of sugar as bacteria grows best on residue left behind by starchy and sugary food. Hard candy and taffy can stick to the surface of teeth and dissolve enamel, while sugary drinks like coffee and soda can produce environments where bacteria can grow and feast on the teeth. Hot drinks, in particular, are more likely to lead to cavities as they tend to stay in your mouth a little longer.

The food we eat every day can have a huge effect on the state of our teeth. Simply brushing before bed or after meals isn’t always enough as bacteria and harmful acids can destroy enamel and weaken teeth in no time. Bacteria can also hide in places that are difficult to brush and floss and can worsen the state of your teeth and gums. Munching on snacks and desserts every day can also increase your chances of developing painful cavities as the starch and sugar left behind can melt away enamel and make the teeth more prone to serious infection.

A great dental scaler can work wonders for your teeth and keep harmful bacteria and plaque away. The thin titanium cleaning head can easily dig into corners where your toothbrush can’t reach and remove harmful bacteria. With the dental scaler, you can also easily remove food to ensure that your teeth aren’t harmed by sugar and starches. Our online store has a lovely dental scaler that you can always rely on to keep your teeth clean, healthy, and cavity-free, so why not buy one today with just one click?


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