When the bacteria infect the teeth, they cause dental cavities or caries, which appear as holes on the surface of the teeth. They are caused by bacteria on the surface of teeth creating acid out of sugar. The most common bacterium which causes cavities is Streptococcus mutans. A cavity should not be ignored and reported to a dentist as soon as possible. So rush to a dental clinic if you suspect a cavity.
The bacteria act on the tooth by forming a sticky film on it. This sticky film, known as plaque, removes the minerals from the enamel. The enamel is a coating on the teeth which comprises mainly of calcium and phosphate. This erosion of the minerals causes small holes in the enamel. If the damage reaches the dentin layer under the enamel, it leads to the formation of the cavity.
How to get rid of cavities at home
Studies show that people with cavities often lack vitamin D. Adding vitamin D to the diet of kids resulted in a reduction of cavities. Not getting enough vitamin D makes the teeth more susceptible to cavities. However, there are other risk factors like:
- Sugar-free gum
Chewing gum may not go down too well with the adults but kids love it. Chewing sugar-free gum after meals is good news for your teeth and gums. Sugar free gum plays a significant role in the remineralization of enamel. People are opting for gum containing xylitol which is effective in stimulating the flow of saliva, raising the pH of plaque, and reducing S. mutans.
- Vitamin D
We all know that Vitamin D plays a significant role in the absorption of calcium and phosphate from your diet. The better the absorption of vitamin D and calcium from the diet, the lesser will be the chances of having a cavity. You can get these essentials from yogurt and milk. Of course, spending time in the sun will also reward you with vitamin D.
- Brushing with fluoride toothpaste
Fluoride has a significant role in protecting the teeth from cavities. That is exactly the reason why many toothpastes have fluoride in them. Ensure that you brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste to maintain their good health.
- Cut down on sugary foods
This one is beneficial for both your weight and your teeth. Sugar is one of the most significant causative factors of cavities. The ideal sugar consumption should be less than 10 percent of your total daily calorie intake. If you must have something sweet, it is advisable to eat it once. If you keep on eating sweet things throughout the day, the teeth will not get a chance to remineralize them.
When to see a dentist
If you develop deep cavities, even painless ones, you must visit a dentist. Of course, regular dental checkups are the best way to detect and treat cavities.