Anyone who has been going to the dentist regularly for most of their life probably has some experience with cavities and dental fillings. The reason we say that is because tooth decay is fairly common among people of all ages.
Despite how common cavities are, however, people still have some misconceptions about what causes them and how to effectively prevent them.
That’s why our team at Precise Dental of Houston wants to share today’s blog with you. Dr. Crouse is committed making sure patients receive regular deep dental cleanings and thorough exams to help prevent cavities before they start.
Part of that means you need the facts! The more you know about tooth decay and cavity prevention, the better chance you have of achieving and maintaining a healthy, beautiful smile.
So why do you get cavities in the first place? You’ve probably grown up hearing that cavities are caused by consuming too much sugar. But this is only partly true.
The fact is, cavities occur when your tooth enamel has been too eroded by acids in your mouth to properly defend your teeth and gums from harmful bacteria. You’ve been warned about what too much sugar does to your teeth because it’s what the bacteria feeds off of to create those eroding acids that attack your enamel to begin with.
Hence, the cavities. So one of the best ways to prevent cavities is to keep your teeth and gums as clean as possible. That involves a good daily oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing and a commitment to keeping those routine cleanings and exams at Precise Dental of Houston!
There is more to cavity prevention to just good oral hygiene and professional dental checkups. Yes, brushing twice a day, flossing at least once a day, and visiting your dentist are all a huge part of it. But it’s also about education.
So here are more facts about cavities and dental fillings that may surprise you.
Maybe you’ve always assumed that if you had a cavity, you’d know. Why? Because you’d feel it, right?
Unfortunately, not all dental problems come with noticeable symptoms. Cavities are one of those things. When your tooth enamel is weakened, bacteria can get in there and create it’s own cozy little environment. It often grows quietly enough so that you don’t even realize it’s there.
Just like with something as sneaky as gum disease, a cavity that doesn’t bring any pain with it can only be detected and properly treated through a professional dental exam. That’s why it’s so important that you come to see us here in Houston at least twice a year for checkups.
Ignoring a cavity only allows it to grow larger. This is a big problem for two major reasons.
First, once a cavity gets big enough, a standard dental filling will no longer work. Secondly, giving a cavity more time to live in your mouth will give it more opportunity to get inside your tooth and infect the pulp, which can only be treated with a root canal.
As we just mentioned, a cavity can actually become too large for a standard filling. That’s because dental fillings work by bonding to the healthy enamel your tooth still has. Without enough healthy enamel, the filling won’t stay.
In cases like this, we use a tooth-colored dental crown. A crown will cover your damaged tooth, sealing the cavity and protecting your tooth from further decay.
If you’re an adult with an old dental filling from years ago, chances are it’s a dark, metal filling. Thanks to our advanced technology here in our Houston dental office, you don’t have to settle for a dark, obvious filling anymore.
Dr. Crouse uses composite fillings that match the color of your natural teeth so no one will notice your dental work at all.
Now that we’ve cleared up some common misconceptions about cavities and fillings, it’s time to pay us a visit at Precise Dental of Houston to make sure you’re free and clear of any of these problems we’ve addressed.