Cavities are one of the most common dental issues that most people face these days. If left untreated, they can lead to pain, discomfort, and even tooth loss. But why do they happen in the first place?

Colgate says that cavities often start from tooth decay. Cavity formation usually begins when bacteria inflict damage on the teeth’s enamel, destroying the teeth’s hard surface as the decay spreads. If left untreated, it can penetrate even deeper into the layer, consuming or eroding everything as it goes.

Primary symptoms of cavity buildup

The signs and symptoms of cavity buildup can vary, depending on the extent of the affliction. Mayo Clinic says some people don’t even experience any symptoms at all. But as the damage of the decay becomes more severe, it can cause symptoms such as toothache and tooth sensitivity.

Meanwhile, others might feel a mild to sharp pain whenever they eat or drink something sweet. Discomfort may also be experienced when eating or drinking something cold or hot.

Most people who have cavity buildup notice pits or holes in their teeth. There are also visible black, brown, or white stains on the surface of their teeth.

Common causes of cavities

There are several reasons why a person develops tooth decay. One of the most common causes is plaque formation. Dental plaque is a sticky film that covers the exterior part of your teeth. It usually appears when a person regularly consumes a lot of sugar and starches without brushing or cleaning their teeth. If a person continues to neglect their oral hygiene, the plaque will soon start to harden, creating a defensive wall for harmful bacteria to thrive.

The acid coming from the bacteria in the plaque breaks down the minerals in your enamel. Once this happens, the enamel begins to erode, causing tiny openings to appear on the surface of the tooth. Once the exterior structure of your teeth starts to fail, it’ll soon become prone to bacterial attack and less resistant to acid.

The tooth erosion will cause your teeth to decay, which makes your teeth prone to bacterial and acid attack. Soon, the damage will move to the pulp and affect the nerves. It will even damage the blood vessels inside the tooth. Once the bacteria attacks the interior part of your tooth, the pulp will start to swell and get irritated.

The infection will cause the pulp to expand and swell, pressing the nerves even more, which causes pain to the person. Once this happens, your dentist in Upland, Caifornia will require you to undergo a root canal procedure to treat the condition.

Protecting yourself from tooth cavities

kid brushing teeth

The best way to reduce the risk of developing cavities is through proper oral and dental hygiene. You need to brush your teeth twice a day using fluoride toothpaste to give your teeth the protection that they need. Also, floss at least once a day. You should limit your intake of sugary or acidic fosods, too.

Visiting your dentist regularly for teeth cleaning can also help in preventing any dental problems in the future.