Here are some of the reasons why you might develop a cavity:
1. You’re Not Using the Right Dental Tools and Technique
Brushing too hard or brushing with hard bristles can damage your enamel and cause gum recession. Be mindful to brush gently for two minutes using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Carefully brush all the sides of every tooth, your gumline, and your tongue. Many electric toothbrushes have a built-in two-minute timer and pressure sensor that can make brushing easier if your mind tends to wander.
You should also floss every day! Floss removes bacteria and food particles from between your teeth and from under your gums that your toothbrush can’t reach.
2. You Have a Sugar-Rich Diet
The more you snack on and drink foods and beverages rich in sugar, the greater your chance of developing cavities. Bad bacteria in the mouth eat sugar, carbohydrates, and starch. Then they produce harmful acids that strip the minerals from your enamel. Because adequate minerals are critical for strong enamel, demineralized enamel is weak. If the area of weakened enamel is not fortified, it will progress into a hole called a cavity.
Whenever possible, choose water instead of soda and juice, and fresh fruit and vegetables instead of processed snacks and candy.
3. You Have Dry Mouth
Your saliva plays an important role in fighting off cavities. Saliva washes away the plaque and food particles in our mouth that can lead to decay and cavities. It also hardens weakened enamel by depositing minerals onto the surface of your teeth. Having a dry mouth means you don’t produce enough saliva. Your teeth will experience more demineralization than remineralization and your mouth becomes more habitable to bacteria.
4. It Runs in the Family
Some families are more prone to developing cavities than others due to genetics and/or shared lifestyle habits.
5. You Skip Your Routine Dental Visits
Regular dental cleanings allow us to scrape away built-up plaque and tartar that can cause cavities and gum disease. We recommend visiting us at least every six months!
At Farmington Dental & Orthodontics, we offer a variety of restorative dental services that can help improve your oral health. If you have a cavity, we can make recommendations on the right treatment for your needs and suggest ways you can prevent future tooth decay. We also offer many patient amenities to make your visit comfortable. Contact us today to schedule your appointment!
Image from Authority Dental under CC 2.0