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Created on February 28, 2017
“Cavities are a childhood problem!” This is a statement we hear from adults who cannot understand why the issue of tooth decay has followed them into adulthood. It’s true; by and large, cavities tend to be a problem that we can leave behind at some point. With really good care throughout childhood, in fact, it is possible to set the stage for a cavity-free life. That being said, we also have to admit that, just because it’s possible doesn’t mean it’s easy.
Fighting cavities is sometimes particularly difficult. Here are some of the reasons why . . .
Too little space in between teeth.
We often discuss the need to be watchful of areas in which there is too much space between teeth. This is because debris and bacteria, held together in plaque, can set up shop pretty much anywhere there is room. While gaps are something to watch, crowding and overlap are two prevalent problems that also pose a risk for increased tooth decay. The point of overlap creates a hidden ridge beneath which plaque can go undetected. More importantly, undisturbed.
Deep pits on chewing surfaces.
It is necessary for our teeth to have grooves and pits. Without a varied surface, it would be incredibly difficult to chew food with any success. The downside to the deep pits on molars, and also on premolars, is that plaque buildup may occur with relative ease. Many children are treated with dental sealants to inhibit the development of cavities on back teeth. However, any person whose molars are deeply pitted can benefit from this preventive treatment.
Too little saliva.
To keep the mouth in tip-top shape, saliva is a must. The body naturally secretes saliva when we eat to help break up food. Saliva also contains minerals to fortify teeth that lose their mineral content with chewing. Finally, saliva is intended to “water down” acid and sugar residue as a protective measure.
There are a number of reasons why a person of any age may become susceptible to cavities. We are here to help you figure out why your teeth are vulnerable, and to develop a plan to mitigate your risks. Schedule a visit with your friendly Springfield dentist at (413) 781-7645.