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What Causes Tooth Decay

What Causes Tooth DecayThe bacteria that naturally live in your mouth feed on the foods and drinks you enjoy every day. They then create an acidic waste product that corrodes the enamel surface of your teeth. This process is called demineralization. Plaque, a sticky, colorless film, forms when these bacteria combine with food particles and saliva. Plaque tends to build up around the base of the teeth near the gums and between the teeth. The longer plaque remains on teeth, the more erosion is likely to occur. As the plaque and bacteria wear away dental enamel, small holes begin to appear, which allow bacteria to reach into the inner layers of the teeth, or the dentin. Dr. Mirani, Beverly Hills dentist, recommends prevention as the best strategy to avoid tooth decay and cavities.

Brushing your teeth after meals or at least twice a day and flossing daily can minimize the number of bacteria in your mouth and reduce plaque buildup. Regular professional cleanings can remove plaque and tartar, a mineralized buildup that can only be removed by a dental professional, from those hard-to-reach places and help you keep your teeth cleaner and healthier.

If a cavity forms and is left untreated, the bacteria can travel through the dentin and into the pulp, or interior of the tooth where the blood vessels and nerves are contained. The resulting infection can be extremely painful and lead to profound sensitivity and even bone loss. Because your body’s immune system cannot adequately reach an infection inside the tooth, the infection can progress quickly in a very short time. A root canal treatment can remove the infection and save the tooth.

Give us a call today to learn more or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Mirani, specialist in root canal in Beverly Hills.

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