Whether you’re on the path of developing good dental habits or trying to maintain a healthy smile, it’s always a good idea to have some general knowledge of what causes tooth decay. At Ashley Dental Associates, we believe in informing, educating, and communicating with our patients so that they can better understand what is causing dental problems and how they can prevent future problems from forming. In this blog, we break down some of the main factors that lead to decay and answer one of our most frequently asked questions: why do I get cavities?
Eating a well-balanced diet is key to so many facets of your overall health, and this is definitely the case when it comes to your oral health. If you regularly snack, sip or graze on anything sugary throughout the day, you are at a higher risk of getting cavities. One of the biggest decay-causing culprits? Soda. Those who drink three or more glasses of soda per day have 62% more decay, fillings, and tooth loss than non-soda drinkers.
Saliva plays a significant role when it comes to keeping your teeth clean and preventing decay. It functions to wash away excess plaque and bacteria. This is why dry mouth makes you far more susceptible to cavities. If you suffer from a dry mouth, make sure you talk with a dentist about the best treatment options.
Similar to other health conditions, genetics have an effect on the health of your teeth. More specifically, some people may be more predisposed to cavity-causing bacteria strains. While genetics may be out of your control, you can take steps to promote good oral health, like brushing after every meal and staying on track with your dental appointments.
Tooth anatomy is another factor that may be out of your control, but you can still learn different tips to optimize your dental health. Some examples of tooth anatomy that can lead to an increased risk of tooth decay are crowded teeth or naturally groovy teeth. With groovy teeth, food is more likely to get caught within them, and with crowded teeth it is more difficult to reach the areas where plaque and bacteria are hiding. If you regularly brush and floss, but still miss these areas, cavities can easily begin to form.
Receding gums can be caused by a variety of factors, including periodontal disease, genetics, poor dental hygiene, or tobacco use. When the gums recede, it leaves the root of the tooth exposed. The root is not covered with the same protective enamel as the rest of the tooth and is much softer, which makes this area a lot more prone to cavities.
Contact Ashley Dental Associates
For all of your dental-related questions, including what may be the underlying cause of your cavities, contact Ashley Dental Associates. It’s never too late to get back on track with good dental habits. Schedule an appointment today by calling us at (843) 767-2600.