Tooth decay is one of the most common health issues in the United States, affecting children and adults alike. That’s just one reason David A. Rice DDS in Elgin likes to see patients for a cleaning and checkup every six months.
Blame it on Bacteria
The cause of tooth decay is bacteria. Bacteria live in your mouth and combine with plaque and acids to weaken the enamel coating on your teeth. The breakdown of your tooth enamel can often bring about the development of small holes in your teeth which are known as cavities.
Tooth decay is typically a result of diet and oral hygiene choices. When sticky foods are consumed and allowed to sit on the teeth, or foods full of sugars and starches are consumed throughout the day, dental caries can arise. Foods to avoid include soda and sugary chewing gum; these foods tend to create an environment where bacteria flourish.
To help prevent tooth decay, limit sugary and starchy foods between meals. Also, brushing at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, and flossing at least once a day, will help prevent tooth decay.