Is Tooth Decay Contagious?

tooth decay prevention Wilson

This message from Wilson Dental Group focuses on dental health.

Your mouth has a thriving community of bacteria. There are from 200-300 types. But relatively few of them cause tooth decay.

Bacteria that cause decay are in the mutans streptococcus family. The bacteria mix with sugar. This mixture creates a powerful acid. The acid reduces the calcium in tooth enamel. When the bacteria remains on teeth, it creates a yellowish substance called plaque. Plaque is brutally effective at drilling into tooth enamel and causing cavities. Minerals in saliva and fluoride help enamel re-mineralize.

Special Caution for Parents

The tooth decay bacteria can spread through saliva. People in close contact with one another are at risk. Sharing spoons or kissing are two avenues. Mothers, fathers, siblings, and caregivers can the bacteria to babies. Young children whose teeth are forming are at a heightened risk of decay. It’s important that parents protect their children from early tooth decay. Start teaching daily oral hygiene as soon as your child’s first tooth appears. Childhood cavities is so prevalent that some parents believe it’s just part of growing up. But it doesn’t have to be!

Daily oral hygiene, a healthy diet, and fluoride protect young teeth. You and your youngster can get fluoride from toothpaste, fluoridated water, fluoride rinses, fluoride gels, and fluoride supplements.

The Role of Fluoride in Cavity Prevention

If the teeth are constantly assaulted with food and liquids (especially acidic or sugary types), the enamel never has a chance to remineralize. The combination forms the dangerous acid. Acid and plaque weakens the enamel and may cause a white spot. This is a sign of mineral loss. It’s the first step in the formation of a cavity. At this point, you can reverse the mineral loss.

Fluoride does three critical things:

  1. It replaces minerals
  2. It prevents further mineral loss
  3. It decreases acid-causing bacteria

Remember that too much fluoride can actually stain teeth. At the Wilson Dental Group, we can advise you on the proper amount. Our services include general and cosmetic dentistry. Schedule your next checkup with us today!

Contact Wilson Dental Group:

252-653-4099

Location (Tap to open in Google Maps):

3401 Raleigh Road Pkwy W Ste 10C
Wilson, North Carolina
27896

 

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