What are Tooth Decay and Gum Disease?

Good oral care goes hand in hand with a healthy lifestyle. Keeping your mouth fresh and clean can be simple if you stick to a routine that works for you. Daily teeth cleaning, good eating habits, and regular dental visits can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

What are Tooth Decay and Gum Disease?

Tooth decay is another name for what we more commonly call ‘Cavities.’ Your teeth are covered with a sticky film of bacteria called plaque. After a meal or snack, these bacteria convert the sugar in foods into acids. These acids attack the enamel (the tooth’s hard outer layer). Repeated attacks can cause the enamel to break down and lead to cavities.

Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing at least once, you can remove most of the harmful plaque and bacteria. But if plaque stays on the teeth, it will eventually harden into tartar. It is harder to brush and floss when tartar builds up the near the gum line.

Plaque that is not removed can also irritate and inflame your gums, making them swell or bleed. This is called gingivitis, the early stage of gum disease. The good news is that gingivitis can be reversed with professional dental cleaning and good oral hygiene at home.

If gum disease is left untreated, it can cause your gums to pull away from the teeth. Pockets or spaces can form between the teeth and gums. These pockets can become infected. In advanced stages of gum disease, bone loss can occur and teeth may become loose, fall out or have to be pulled.

You can prevent both tooth decay and gum disease by always remembering to brush twice and floss daily.

When was the last time you visited Smile Workshop? Routine dental cleanings play a crucial role in preventing gum disease and tooth decay. Book a dental appointment at your local Smile Workshop. We have locations in North DallasSouth DallasDentonCedar HillHurstBalch SpringsAmarillo and San Antonio.