Are Tooth Decay and Cavities the Same

Tooth decay and cavities are some of the conditions you are likely to experience when you fail to observe proper oral care practices. These are dental illnesses that destroy the outer surface of your teeth. The enamel made up of minerals. Acid action, which results in tooth decay and cavities, causes the demineralization of the teeth. Procedures such as fluoride varnish treatment are commonly used to protect the enamel from the demineralization process.

Other preventive measures such as deep cleaning, which involve the removal of calculus and polishing the teeth using prophy paste have also proved to be effective. Failure to take quick measures to prevent these conditions in their early stages can make them escalate, and you will be forced to spend a lot on future treatments.

You are also likely to suffer from gum infection when you fail to take proper care of your teeth. Always observe the correct oral care procedures to stay free from the conditions. Tooth decay and cavities are the most common dental conditions that affect people from different age brackets.  You should understand that the two are completely different things despite many dentists terming them as the same thing.

Difference Between Cavities and Tooth Decay

Most people have been confusing cavities with tooth decay. We have also seen some dentists categorizing them as the same while giving out medical prescriptions. Cavities and tooth decay are entirely different. Tooth decay is a continuous condition that leads to the wearing out of the enamel while a cavity is the hole or cracks that form on your teeth. Decay, also dental caries can result in cavities if it goes untreated. It starts when plaque builds up on your teeth.

Plaque is a sticky film that is usually white or yellow in appearance and cannot be removed through brushing. It harbors bacteria responsible for tooth decay. Bacteria in plaque digest sugar from the food you eat to produce an acid that causes tooth decay. You are also likely to develop cavities with time. Understanding the difference between the two conditions can help you take proper treatment measures.

Signs of Cavities and Dental Decay

Different signs may show up when you have cavities or dental decay. One thing you are likely to experience is sensitivity when consuming hot or cold foods and beverages. This is because your nerves are more exposed when cavities start forming. Visible holes or cracks will begin forming on your teeth once your dental decay condition progresses. They can go deeper into your gums if you fail to take swift measures to treat them.

Dark or brown spots may start forming on your teeth. This is usually a sign of dental decay. Bad breath is another sign of dental decay you will experience. It comes about as a result of plaque buildup and bacteria action taking place on your teeth. Your gums will become more sensitive as the condition spreads to the gum pockets. It is important to take immediate measures to manage tooth decay and cavities when you start noticing such symptoms.

The Best Ways to Prevent Tooth Decay and Cavities

The following are some of the best ways to prevent tooth decay and cavities.

Proper Oral Hygiene

Observing the right oral care practices will keep you free from these conditions. These practices play an essential role in keeping your teeth free from bacteria or other factors that may harbor them. A perfect example is brushing. You should brush your teeth after every meal or twice a day to get rid of food remains from your teeth. Such remains are responsible for plaque buildup when you fail to eliminate them from your teeth. Floss regularly to get rid of food remains from the spaces between your teeth, where you cannot reach through normal brushing.

Dental Examination

Having your teeth examined regularly can keep you free from tooth decay and cavities. It is through such examinations that your dentist can identify the condition you are suffering from or any threats you might be facing. They will also offer proper advice on different things you should do to keep your teeth in perfect shape. Look for a wonderful dental clinic where you can get examined every three months.

Dental Scaling

Plaque buildup on your teeth is the leading cause of tooth decay and cavities. Getting rid of it through routine procedures such as brushing is usually a difficult task. It can only be removed using special tools and a procedure that should be performed by a dentist or dental hygienist. Scaling is the procedure meant to eliminate this sticky film from your teeth. Tartar scraper is a special tool used for scaling. It removes calculus from your teeth and gum pockets. Polishing is the other practice performed after the procedure and is meant to leave the surface of your teeth smooth.

Minimize Sugar in Your Diet

Sugar in your diet is one of the leading causes of tooth decay and cavities. This is because bacteria digest sugar from the food you eat to produce acid responsible for the demineralization of the enamel. You should stay clear of sugary foods and lower the amount of starch you consume. Alternatives like vitamins and calcium are the best in ensuring you develop strong teeth and healthy gums.

Dental Treatments

There are several dental treatments you can undergo that will help restore your condition. They are meant to improve the state of your teeth by restoring cavities and treating decay. Common dental treatments you can get include fillings, tooth extraction, crowns, and canal treatment. Fillings, which are usually made of different materials such as porcelain and resin, are used to cover the holes left on your teeth. Your dentist will remove the decaying matter before filling the gaps. Tooth extraction is a final option for those who have irreversible dental decay or cavities. Your dentist will be forced to remove the affected tooth and replace it with dental bridges or other permanent options. Take proper measures to improve your condition when you start experiencing tooth decay or cavities formation.

Fluoride Varnish Procedure

The primary benefit of using fluoride is that it helps to strengthen the teeth. This is a mineral that occurs naturally in water, and it is also a key ingredient in most dental care products. High concentration fluoride treatment is vital in preventing tooth decay and cavities. Fluoride varnish is one product known to contain the mineral in higher concentrations. You can undergo a procedure that involves the application of this product to your teeth. Fluoride varnish leaves your teeth stronger than ever, keeping you free from tooth decay and cavities.

The Role of Fluoride Varnish in Preventing Tooth Decay and Cavities

Fluoride varnish works in different ways to prevent tooth decay and cavities in humans. Here is how it keeps you free from the two dental conditions. 

Strengthening Your Teeth

One of the best ways fluoride varnish works to keep your teeth free from decay and cavities is by strengthening the enamel. This is vital in preventing the demineralization of your teeth. You are more likely to experience tooth decay and cavities will start forming as a result. High concentration fluoride in this varnish will leave your enamel stronger by promoting the remineralization process. The chances of cavities forming or experiencing tooth decay are very minimal when you use fluoride varnish. A stronger enamel is also resistant to acid attack.

Keeps Off Bacteria

Fluoride varnish keeps bacteria from your teeth. At high concentrations, it helps to stop bacterial metabolism, making them produce less acid. The chances of your teeth getting demineralized are very minimal when you use fluoride varnish which has high concentrations of the mineral. How about you use fluoride varnish more to keep your teeth free from cavities and tooth decay.

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