Cavities are caused by tooth decay, a slow process that can often be avoided by adopting a consistent dental hygiene and teeth cleaning routine. Because tooth decay is a result of bacterial acids eating through your tooth enamel, simply brushing and flossing after every meal and snack, and visiting our Austin dentistry office for biannual visits can help prevent this common oral health issue. Please call to schedule a routine exam and cleaning at our office.
What causes Cavities?
Foods and beverages that contain sugar, starch, and carbohydrates are a natural food-source for many of the bacteria in your mouth. When these substances are not promptly removed from your teeth, the bacteria in your mouth begin to feed on them, producing an acidic byproduct that is held tight to the surface of your teeth by dental plaque. When allowed to stay in place, plaque hardens into tarter, a substance that is significantly more difficult to remove with at-home treatments.
After eating through the outer layer of a tooth, bacteria will continue to move into its inner layer as the cavity advances. This can result in issues such as tooth infection and gum disease. If your tooth decay eventually infects the dental pulp in the inner chamber of your tooth, you may need a treatment commonly referred to as a root canal to prevent further damage to the tooth and its supporting structures. By catching cavities early and preventing them before they start, you and our experienced dentist can stop the progress of tooth decay.
Preventing and Treating Cavities
The most effective ways to prevent cavities are to avoid sugary foods, brush and floss after every meal and snack, and visit our office every six months for professional cleanings and examinations. If cavities are detected during your biannual examinations, Dr. Williams will determine if or porcelain inlays/onlays are best suited to remove decay and prevent further damage to your tooth. Dr. Williams finds these cavity treatments preferable to metal fillings due to their aesthetic and structural superiority. This can be discussed with you in more detail during your regularly scheduled appointments.