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Dental decay is a common phenomenon among people from all walks of life. No single person is immune to this form of deterioration that affects the human teeth. Decay is essentially caused by plaque which is a stubborn layer of bacteria, dead food particles and saliva that forms on peoples’ teeth. Tooth decay is characterized by the formation of cracks and holes in the structure of a tooth.

So how does tooth decay come to exist? It all start when a person fails to brush their teeth. Failure to maintain proper dental hygiene means that a lot of food particles remain stuck in the gaps between the teeth. The bacteria in the mouth then starts feeding on the food that is stuck in between the teeth and this leads to the production of acid. This acid is responsible for the gradual erosion of the enamel which is the outermost layer of a tooth.

Before long, erosion surpasses the outer shell of a tooth and reaches the dentine. This is when tooth decay begins to take shape and a person starts to feel the change in the structure of a tooth. The pain and discomfort that comes with decay normally begins when the eroding acid reaches the pulp cavity which is the innermost layer of the teeth. This stage of decay is considered the most severe. Saliva settles in the crater that has formed in the structure of the tooth and makes the situation worse. Bad breath is a common symptom of chronic tooth decay due to the accumulation of saliva and dead food particles in the structure of the affected teeth.

The end result of this whole process is usually a person visiting a dentist to have the decayed tooth or teeth removed. Nobody wants to get to this point. There are a number of preventive measures that a person can employ to control the formation and growth of tooth decay. Here are a few:

Brushing After Meals

This cannot be emphasized enough. It is very important that both children and adults brush their teeth at least twice a day. If possible, a person can brush three times a day just to be on the safe side. It is also paramount that brushing is done using a good toothbrush with strong bristles. A good toothpaste is also part and parcel of keeping teeth clean and decay free.

Eating Calcium Rich Foods

Having strong teeth is also a good strategy against tooth decay. Being in the habit of incorporating foods such as vegetables, nuts and dairy products into daily meals can go a long way in keeping teeth strong and resilient.

Regularly Seeing A Dentist

A regular dental check-up does not hurt at all. A dentist can advise on so many things that relate to dental decay. He or she will also fill up any upcoming cases of tooth decay before the situation becomes any worse. Restoration of decayed teeth is very important in order to control the severity of the condition before it blows out of proportion.

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Written by AJ