HOW TO PREVENT AND TREAT TOOTH DECAY & CAVITIES
Did you know that more than 1 in 4 adults in the United States have untreated tooth decay, according to the CDC? Tooth decay is a common and often painful oral condition that should be treated as soon as possible.
Stages of Tooth Decay
There are four primary stages of tooth decay. They are:
- Early enamel tooth decay
- Tooth decay into dentin
- Advanced tooth decay
- Abscessed tooth
The first two stages are typically not painful. The final two stages can be extremely painful.
Causes and Consequences of Tooth Decay
An untreated cavity can lead to an infection in the tooth which is called a tooth abscess. Untreated tooth decay also destroys the inside of the tooth. This requires more extensive treatment, or possibly removal of the whole tooth! Wondering what increases this risk? Eating carbohydrates such as sugars and starches increase the risk of tooth decay.
Prevention and Treatment
The best way to prevent tooth decay is to follow the dentist recommendations for tooth care – specifically brushing for 2 mins. twice every day, flossing, and rinsing with an oral care solution. This is considered the gold standard for preventative dental care.
If you already have tooth decay that’s beyond prevention, it needs to be treated by a professional – in most cases by filling the cavity.
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