You've probably been told since you were a kid to do everything you can to avoid cavities. But if you're like most of us, you may still be a bit hazy on the facts about tooth decay. Learn how to separate truth from fiction and you'll be on your way to a trouble-free smile.
1. Myth: Sugar Is the Only Thing That Causes Cavities
"The truth is, acid produced by bacteria in your mouth is the cause of cavities," says Kimberly A. Harms, DDS, an American Dental Association spokeswoman.
Any carb you eat can start that process. That includes sugar as well as rice, potatoes, bread, fruits, and vegetables.
2. Fact: Acid Causes Tooth Decay
Acidic foods can break down your teeth's outer shell (called the enamel), weaken the tooth, and make teeth more likely to decay.
"The bacteria responsible for tooth decay produces acids," says Misty Horn-Blake, DDS, a dentist in John...
Even though the primary dentition (commonly known as baby teeth) are temporary, it's important to realize how essential they are to the eventual eruption of your child's permanent teeth. Baby teeth play a crucial role in helping kids learn to speak and chew food for nourishment, but they also save space for their adult teeth. This is why, if your child has a badly decayed primary tooth, a stainless steel crown may be the best solution.
LONGEVITY OF BABY TEETH
Many parents believe baby teeth aren't in the mouth for long. But the truth is these little chompers need to be functional for quite a few years. The first tooth appears around six months, per the American Dental Association (ADA), and by ages two to three all 20 teeth will have erupted. Although children begin to lose a few baby teeth by about six, they won't lose thei...
It's called "pop" in the Midwest and most of Canada. It's "soda" in the Northeast. And it goes by a well-known brand name in much of the South.
People across North America use different words to identify a sugary, carbonated soft drink. But however they say it, they're talking about something that can cause serious oral health problems.
Soft drinks have emerged as one of the most significant dietary sources of tooth decay, affecting people of all ages. Acids and acidic sugar byproducts in soft drinks soften tooth enamel, contributing to the formation of cavities.
In extreme cases, softer enamel combined with improper brushing, grinding of the teeth or other conditions can lead to tooth loss.
Sugar-free drinks, which account for only 14 percent of all soft drink consumption, are less harmful1. However, they are acidic and potentially can still cause problems.