Can Tooth Decay Be Reversed?

Can Tooth Decay Be Reversed?

Jul 01, 2022

What is Tooth Decay?

The enamel is strong, and it protects the inner parts of the teeth. However, if exposed to an acid solution, it begins to wear out, and cavities can form. We have a colony of bacteria in the mouth that feeds on sugar and break down the food, producing a solution. The acid solution attacks the enamel and forms plaques accumulating on the teeth and along the gum line.

The plaque buildup will harden and form tartar that can irritate the gums and is hard to remove with a toothbrush. You may need to visit a dentist near you for professional cleaning to remove the tartar.

What are the Stages of Cavities?

Dental cavities develop in five stages that include:

  • Demineralization 

The demineralization process weakens the teeth, causing them to develop cavities.

  • Enamel and dentin decay

As the enamel wears out, it develops a hole in the teeth. The decay can spread to the dentin, a soft tissue underneath the enamel. This causes a toothache and may require a trip to a dental clinic near you.

  • Pulp infection

The pulp, an inner layer, has nerves and blood vessels that nourish your teeth. This is a severe infection that can affect the surrounding tissues.

  • Abscess

This occurs when the infection spreads beneath the pulp and creates pus pockets. These pockets can be painful and need immediate attention, so visit an emergency dentist in St. Petersburg.

What are the Signs of Cavities

Once a tooth cavity has formed, it can spread quickly to adjacent teeth, causing severe damage. Signs of a cavity include:

  • Teeth that are red or swollen
  • Sensitive to hot or cold
  • Toothache
  • Losing the ability to chew or bite into food

How Can You Reverse Tooth Decay?

Cavities are irreversible if caught early, so visit Dr. Weatherwax for proper treatment. A few treatment options are available:

  • Dental fillings

A dental filling is a process that restores the cavity and makes it look like a normal tooth.

Getting dental fillings in St. Petersburg, FL, is straightforward, and it involves cleaning, drilling out the teeth, and filling the teeth. However, this process depends on the type of material you choose.

  • Inlays and Onlays 

Dental inlays and Onlays are similar to dental fillings, but they are used when the tooth cavity is too large for a filling. They come in either porcelain, resin, or gold materials.

  • Dental crowns 

A dental crown is a tooth restoration used when the cavity is large for a filling or inlays and Onlays. It is done by removing the affected part of the tooth and replacing it with a dental crown. These restorations are made of porcelain, composite, or gold.

  • Root canal 

A root canal is a process that removes the damaged areas in the tooth, then cleans it and seals it off. The treatment prevents further damage to the tooth and stops the pain. The procedure removes the infected pulp and saves the tooth from extraction.

  • Extraction

Tooth removal is done when the tooth is severely damaged to be saved. It involves pulling the tooth from the socket and replacing it with an artificial tooth.

How Can You Prevent tooth decay?

1. Eliminate or Limit sugar

Sugars are sweet and sticky, and if they get into the tooth, they can damage the tooth enamel. The oral bacteria feed on sugar and produce an acid solution that can attack the enamel.

2. Choose healthy foods

It is best to eat fresh foods low in carbohydrates, such as fruits and vegetables. They have natural flavors and a high content of vitamins and minerals that your body needs.

Eat foods that are rich in teeth-friendly minerals. These include dairy foods, whole-grain bread, fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, and lean meats like fish.

3. Make oral hygiene a priority 

Brush and floss daily, especially after meals. Poor hygiene is one of the primary contributing factors to cavities and dental decay.

4. Apply fluoride gel and dental sealant

Fluoride, a natural mineral, strengthens the enamel and makes it less prone to decay and cavities. Furthermore, it also reverses mild to moderate dental decay. Your dentist in 33702 recommends fluoride treatments to all people as a preventive measure.

Dental sealants are also ideal for preventing cavities and decay, and school-going children mostly use them. Our pediatric dentist in St. Petersburg will apply the plastic coating on the teeth to shield them from bacteria.

Schedule an Appointment

Visit Dental Arts Ninth St. for more information on treating and preventing dental cavities.

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