Cavities, like many common dental conditions, can often be limited or completely avoided through preventive care. If you’re unsure what preventive care is, it means practicing both a good at-home oral hygiene routine and visit our office regularly for professional cleanings and exams. Because cavities are one of the most common issues our patients experience, today we want to discuss how cavities form, whether they can spread to other teeth, and how you can prevent them.
How Do Cavities Form?
Cavities generally form as a result of two factors: a poor diet and poor oral hygiene. At any given time, your mouth is full of bacteria. Some of this bacteria is beneficial and helps you digest, while other bacteria can be harmful. The harmful bacteria feeds on the sugar and starch in the food you eat. As the bacteria consumes, it produces acid. Over time, acid can wear away on teeth and begin to create a hole in your enamel, otherwise known as a cavity. It is important to address cavities as quickly as possible as they can develop in tooth decay and permanently damage your tooth without proper treatment.
Can Cavities Spread to Other Teeth?
Cavities can’t spread to other teeth, but they certainly have an impact on the rest of your mouth. First of all, the conditions that create a cavity on one tooth certainly can develop into cavities on your other teeth. In situations in which a cavity forms, is left untreated, and your tooth becomes infected, this infection can spread to surrounding teeth.
How Can I Avoid Cavities?
As we mentioned above, cavities can often be avoided. At home, you should brush your teeth twice each day for two minutes each time. Your diet is also a key factor — try to limit your intake of sugar as much as possible. You should also visit our office at least every six months for a professional cleaning and exam.
To ask our team any questions about treating cavities or to schedule your next visit, contact our office today!Contact Us