How Do We Get Cavities?

How Do We Get Cavities?

How Do We Get Cavities?


At one of your visits to our Highlands Ranch Dental Office, you may have been diagnosed with a cavity.  What is a cavity and how did it get there?

A Cavity is a hole in the tooth. The hole is caused by acid produced by bacteria in the mouth. The bacteria then multiply and grow larger creating more acid and causing an even bigger “cavity.”

What causes a cavity?

When you eat foods that are high in sugars, starch, or even acidic foods, the bacteria in the mouth can feed off of them and turn them into acid. Teeth that are subjected to multiple acid attacks begin to de-mineralize (lose their strength) and the chance for them to develop cavities goes way up.

What can you do to prevent cavities?

  1. Make sure to brush and floss regularly, especially after meals with high sugar or starch content.
  2. Avoid sticky or chewy candy that gets stuck in your teeth without flossing or Water Flossing it out.
  3. Limit between-meal snacking. Constant snacking causes an increase in acid in your mouth which increases your risk for cavities.
  4. Make sure to visit our Highlands Ranch Dental office on a regular basis. We recommend at least twice a year for a healthy mouth. This allows us to catch cavities while they’re small and less extensive.
  5. Avoid juice, soda, diet soda, sports drinks, and other sugary drinks on a regular basis.
  6. Talk to our Highlands Ranch Dentist to see if sealants are an option for you. Sealants are a protective coating applied to the surface of the teeth to help prevent bacteria and acid from getting into hard-to-brush areas. 

How do you know if you have a cavity?

Most people are unaware that they have a cavity! That is a good thing. Most times this means that the cavity is still small enough to be removed and a small restoration such as a tooth-colored filling can be placed. These are usually diagnosed with a visual exam or review of your radiographs (x-rays) for cavities between your teeth by our Highlands Ranch Dentist

Pain is a poor indicator of dental disease. A lot of times when you start to experience the discomfort of pain from a cavity, this can mean it has affected a great area of the tooth and even the nerve. This would require more extensive dental treatment and expense.

Don’t wait until you have a toothache! Contact us to schedule your regular examinations and checkups with our Highlands Ranch Dental Office.

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