Teeth Vulnerable to Tooth Decay

Teeth Vulnerable to Tooth Decay

Posted by SHEFFIELD SQUARE DENTAL CARE on Dec 5 2017, 10:17 AM

Tooth decay is one of the most common dental health issues. It occurs when harmful oral bacteria mix with sugars from food, creating tooth-harming acids. Tooth decay can cause cavities.

What Are Vulnerable Teeth?

If your teeth are weakened, it means that they do not have enough healthy tooth structure remaining above the gum line to protect them from decay and infection. This typically occurs due to advanced tooth decay or cavities that have destroyed so much of the tooth that the nerve has become exposed. Such decay can lead to infection of the pulp tissue deep inside the inner chamber of the tooth, which can damage the dental nerves as well as the entire tooth root. Both of these are major threats to the health of your smile - and, if left untreated, can ultimately lead to tooth loss. Fortunately, the dentist can often restore the damaged tooth with a dental crown, bonded filling, or other restorative treatment. 

The first step is always to treat any present dental infection and restore the health of the nerve and the roots. Then your dentist may restore the health of the affected tooth with a protective crown to prevent further damage. If an infection is present, we will also simultaneously work to eliminate the infection before restoring the tooth with one of these highly-effective treatments. This can stop the spread of the infection to other areas of your smile and prevent you from losing your tooth! 

How To Tell If Your Teeth Are Vulnerable

If your teeth are yellow or gray, they are probably vulnerable to decay. That’s because the outer layer of your teeth is made of enamel; once that layer is gone, the dentin underneath is more susceptible to cavities.

Other symptoms of teeth that are too delicate for a bite of food are excessive tooth sensitivity, as well as bleeding gums when you brush and floss. You might also experience pain when biting down on food. These can all be signs of weakened enamel, and your dentist can talk with you about whether you should pursue other options to protect your teeth from tooth decay.

What Causes Teeth to Become Vulnerable

Many patients expect their teeth to be invincible, but the truth is that nothing is foolproof. Even the strongest of teeth can be harmed over time. While brushing and flossing can help to keep teeth and gums free of decay-causing bacteria, habits like biting fingernails or chewing on ice can chip away at the enamel and lead to significant signs of wear. If you suffer from bruxism, or nighttime clenching and grinding, this can also put excess pressure on your teeth and cause cracks and chips. However, when it comes to tooth damage, cavities are the biggest threat, which may lead to sensitivity and pain when exposed to hot or cold temperatures. If left untreated, these minor issues can become major ones and require extensive restorative treatment. This is why it’s so important to keep up with regular cleanings and exams at your dentist’s office. 

Call us at 773-880-2310 or email us at office@sheffieldsquaredental.com to schedule your appointment. Visit Sheffield Square Dental Care at 2835 N. Sheffield Ave, Suite 305, Chicago, IL 60657.

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