All About Cavities

All About Cavities

Below is an excerpt from an article found on Colgate.com that was Reviewed by the Faculty of Columbia University College of Dental Medicine

What’s in Your Mouth? 
To understand what happens when your teeth decay, it’s helpful to know what’s in your mouth naturally. Here are a few of the elements: 

  • Saliva – Your mouth and teeth are constantly bathed in saliva. We never give much thought to our spit, but this fluid is remarkable for what it does to help protect our oral health. Saliva keeps teeth and other parts of your mouth moist and washes away bits of food. Saliva contains minerals that strengthen teeth. It includes buffering agents. They reduce the levels of acid that can decay teeth. Saliva also protects against some viruses and bacteria. 
  • Plaque – Plaque is a soft, gooey substance that sticks to the teeth a bit like jam sticks to a spoon. Like the slime that clings to the bottom of a swimming pool, plaque is a type of biofilm. It contains large numbers of closely packed bacteria, components taken from saliva, and bits of food. Also in the mix are bacterial byproducts and white blood cells. Plaque grows when bacteria attach to the tooth and begin to multiply. Plaque starts forming right after a tooth is cleaned. Within an hour, there’s enough to measure. As time goes on, the plaque thickens. Within two to six hours, the plaque teems with bacteria that can cause cavities and periodontal (gum) disease. 
  • Calculus – If left alone long enough, plaque absorbs minerals from saliva. These minerals form crystals and harden into calculus. Then new plaque forms on top of existing calculus. This new layer can also become hard. 
  • Bacteria – We have many types of bacteria in our mouths. Some bacteria are good; they help control destructive bacteria. When it comes to decay, Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacilli are the bacteria that cause the most damage to teeth. 

To read the entire article visit Colgate.com.

The remainder of the article details the following:

  • How Your Teeth Decay
  • Types of Decay
  • Preventing Cavities

JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

Oral Cancer

In Canada, 3400 new cases of mouth cancer are diagnosed each year. About 50% of those diagnosed do not live longer than 5 years after diagnosis because it wasn’t detected early enough.
The most common sites for oral cancer to be found are the tongue (which has the highest prevalence), throat, floor of the mouth and lips. Regular tobacco use (both chewing and smoking), alcohol consumption and prolonged sun exposure all increase risk in addition to age.

To read the entire article , please visit plus.HealthyTeeth.org


JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

Healthy Mouth, Healthy Body

You already know that in order to avoid cavities and more serious dental problems, you have to take good care of your teeth. But consistent brushing and flossing habits do more than just protect your oral health — they also help keep a host of other serious conditions at bay. Heart disease and stroke, for instance, have both been linked to poor dental hygiene.

Above article from everydayhealth.com/dental-health/101.aspx


JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

Why Toothpaste Makes Everything Else Taste Bad (and How to Fix It)

Ever brush your teeth, then take a swig of orange juice only to curse yourself for drinking such a vile combination? Magazine and weblog Mental_Floss explains why this happens, and how to avoid it. The strong minty flavor is probably part of the problem, as you’d expect, but   Mental_Floss notes that it goes deeper than that. Most toothpastes contain sodium laureth sulfate (and its counterparts, sodium lauryl ether sulfate and sodium lauryl sulfate), which is responsible for making the  toothpaste foam up in your mouth. Its also responsible for everything tasting bad afterward:

While surfactants make brushing our teeth a lot easier, they do more than make foam. Both SLES and SLS mess with our taste buds in two ways. One, they suppress the receptors on our taste buds that perceive sweetness, inhibiting our ability to pick up the sweet notes of food and drink. And, as if that wasn’t enough, they break up the phospholipids on our tongue. These fatty molecules inhibit our receptors for bitterness and keep bitter tastes from overwhelming us, but when they’re broken down by the surfactants in toothpaste, bitter tastes get enhanced.

Basically, they enhance bitter tastes and inhibit sweet ones, making everything taste bad. There are lots of theories out there, but this is currently the most widely accepted one.

The solution? You could brush your teeth after breakfast, but many dental professionals say it’s better to brush beforehand. So, the better option is to search for an SLS-free toothpaste the next time you’re shopping. Speaking from experience, an SLS-free toothpaste changes everything—I used one for a little while and never had the “disgusting orange juice” debacle in the morning. Generally it doesn’t matter what kind of toothpaste you buy, but if you must brush your teeth before breakfast, buying one without SLS is a good idea. Of course, you could always brush your teeth in the shower, too.

By Whitson Gordon
Article appeared on
www.Floss.com

JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

How does plaque cause a cavity?

The hard, outside covering of your teeth is called enamel. Enamel is very hard, mainly because it contains durable mineral salts, like calcium. Mineral salts in your saliva help add to the hardness of your teeth. Mineral salts, however, are prone to attack by acids. Acid causes them to break down.
For an experiment about the power of acid, check out the Healthy Teeth Dental Experiments page!
The plaque that forms on your teeth and doesn’t get washed away by saliva or brushed away by your toothbrush produces acid as it eats up sugar. This acid is produced inside the plaque and can’t be easily washed away by your saliva. The acid dissolves the minerals that make your tooth enamel hard. The surface of the enamel becomes porous – tiny holes appear. After a while, the acid causes the tiny holes in the enamel to get bigger until one large hole appears. This is a cavity.
It’s important to see your dentist before a cavity forms so that the plaque you can’t reach with your toothbrush or floss can be removed.
Above article written by: HealthyTeeth.org

JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048

Not Flossing – Things That Can Ruin Your Smile

Although many of us are much more diligent about brushing than flossing, they are equally important.
“Flossing every day is one of the best things you can do to take care of your teeth. It’s the single most important factor in preventing periodontal disease, which affects more than 50% of adults,” says Meinecke.
Flossing helps remove plaque and debris that sticks to teeth and gums, and gives you a brighter smile by polishing the tooth’s surface; it even helps control bad breath.
Above article by: Kristin Koch, Health.com

JONES SMILES
Sedation ~ Cosmetic ~ Family Dentistry
7330 Spout Springs Road, Suite C15
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(770) 965-3048