Decay of the tooth is a degradation to the teeth due to the conversion of the dental plaque from sugars to acidic content, which decays the teeth. If plaque (black matter) is left to build up, it can lead to issues such as teeth decay and gum disease. Lack of care may lead to the formation of dental abscesses, a collection of pus at the end of the teeth or in the gums.
Symptoms of rotting of the teeth
Tooth decay may not inflict pain. But if you suffer from tooth decay, you can suffer from:
- Toothache: either intense discomfort that keeps you awake and deprives you of sleep, or extreme pain that often has no apparent cause, and may sometimes be painless.
- Dental Sensitivity: You can experience a crushing or uncomfortable sensation when you drink or eat something hot, cold, or sweet.
- black spots on the teeth
- Bad smell breathing
- Bad taste in your mouth
Please see a dentist
Visit the dentist on a frequent basis such that early tooth decay can be treated as quickly as possible to start avoiding further decay. Dental caries are much simpler and quicker to handle in the early stages. Dentists will typically detect tooth decay and more complications with classic examination or X-ray tests.
Daily dental check-ups are also necessary. Where adults are required to undergo the examination at least once every two years and children under the age of 18 must undergo the examination at least once a year.
Treatment of tooth decay
Early stage of tooth decay
The early stages of dental caries, which usually occur before a hole (or cavity) is formed in the tooth, can be stopped by:
- Decreases the quantity of sugary food and drink and the number of times they are consumed
- wash your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride-containing toothpaste
- Your dentist may apply fluoride gel or fluoride toothpaste to the affected teeth.
- Fluoride helps to protect the teeth by enhancing the enamel layer, which makes the teeth more resistant to plaque acids that can cause tooth decay.
Treatment of dental holes
If there is a cavity in a tooth, treatment may include:
- Filling: This involves removing the rotting of the tooth and filling the hole or protecting the tooth.
- Root canal therapy: This may be required to eliminate tooth decay that extends to the middle of the tooth where blood and nerves (pulp) are located.
- Removal of any or half of a tooth-this is generally recommended where a tooth has been seriously compromised and prior procedures cannot be recovered. Your dentist will be able to replace your tooth with a partial denture, bridge or implant.
Preventing decay of teeth in adults
While tooth decay is a common problem, it is also totally preventable. The easiest way to prevent tooth loss and keep your gums as safe as possible is:
Visit your dentist regularly: Your dentist will determine how much you ought to be seen on the basis of the state of your mouth, teeth and gums.
Limit sugary and starchy foods and beverages, particularly between meals or within an hour of bedtime. Few drugs can also contain sugar, so it is safer to search for sugar-free alternatives where possible.
Take care of your teeth and gums: rinse your teeth properly with fluoride-containing toothpaste twice a day, and use floss and interdental brushes at least once a day.
If you have a chronic dry mouth that may be due to any drugs, procedures, or medical problems, see your dentist or general practitioner.
Building healthy eating habits and limiting sugary snacks and beverages will help your child prevent tooth decay. Daily visits to the dentist at a young age can also be promoted.
It’s important to teach your child how to rinse his teeth correctly and consistently. Your dentist will be able to teach you how to do this.
Young children may take baby toothpaste, so be sure to read the label on how to use it. Children can continue to brush their teeth twice a day, particularly before bedtime.
When you eat food and drink a high percentage of carbohydrates, particularly sugary foods and beverages, the bacteria in the plaque turn the carbohydrates into the energy you need and at the same time create the acid that breaks down the enamel coating. The acid will break down the surface of your teeth, forming cavities.
When cavities have developed in the enamel, plaque and bacteria may penetrate the dentin, which is the smoother bone-like layer below the enamel.
Since dentin is thinner than enamel, the tooth decay process is intensified and, without treatment, the bacteria can reach the pulp, the porous core of the teeth that contains nerves and blood vessels. Your nerves will be exposed to the bacteria at this stage which will typically cause dental discomfort.
If not treated, the bacteria may cause dental abscess in the pulp, and the infection may spread to the bone, causing another form of abscess.
Tips for alleviating apprehension of dental care
If you are afraid to see a dentist, here are few tips to ease your fear:
Find an accommodating dentist. Ask friends and family, or find someone specialized in the care of nervous patients.
Meet the doctor to get to know the receptionist and dentist and see the office and get used to the clinic. Tell the dentist what you’re worried with and what your problems are, so that he understands them in advance.
The first appointment is just a medical examination, so you don’t have to concern about any diagnosis. See this first visit as a way to get to know the dentist.
Bring a friend of yours to your appointment. Your dentist will not mind if you are accompanied during an examination or treatment.
Agree with the dentist for a sign that you need a break and want them to stop. It can be as simple as pointing your finger, and this will help you feel more in control.
If you think it will help you, start by brushing and polishing your teeth gradually, and then work on other treatments, such as fillings, once you build trust and a relationship with your dentist.
Talk to your dentist about taking numbing gel if you’re afraid of needles.
Use your headphones to listen to music during your visit, as this may help you relax.