Cavities are holes in your tooth’s enamel that develop when plaque contains acid-producing bacteria and food remnants. This causes teeth to erode, and eventually lead to tooth decay.
Cavities can be prevented by reducing sugar intake, practicing proper oral hygiene and scheduling regular dental cleanings and check-ups. Drinking water between meals and rinsing your mouth after eating sugary or acidic foods and drinks can help rinse out excess food residue and dilute cavity-causing acids.
Tooth decay is a gradual breakdown of your teeth that occurs when harmful bacteria feed on sugars and starches in your diet. They produce acid that erodes the enamel of your teeth.
In the beginning, tooth decay is usually confined to your chewing surfaces of your back teeth, but over time, it can spread to other areas of your mouth. This is why it’s important to brush and floss regularly.
Bacteria collect on the teeth, creating a sticky film called plaque. This plaque produces acids that gradually eat away at your enamel, destroying the essential minerals in it.
If left untreated, the decay moves to the inner part of the tooth where the pulp is located. The pulp contains nerves and blood vessels that help keep your teeth healthy.
Once the decay reaches the pulp, it can cause severe complications. This includes sensitivity, pain, and dental abscesses that can be very dangerous. A root canal can remove the infected tooth pulp and restore the health of your tooth.
Poor Oral Hygiene
Bad breath, also called halitosis, can be caused by a number of things. It can be due to poor dental hygiene, an unhealthy lifestyle or it could indicate a more serious health problem.
One of the most common causes of bad breath is decaying teeth. The bacteria that cause tooth decay produce sulphur compounds that can smell nasty.
A second common cause of bad breath is gum disease. Gum disease is an infection of the gums around your teeth that causes bleeding, inflammation and pain.
It is more common in people who smoke or have diabetes.
Your tonsils have dips and pits in them known as crypts that can trap food particles and other debris. These crypts are ideal breeding grounds for bad breath-causing bacteria.
When these crypts are inflamed, they release the sulfur-based odor that makes you smell bad. They can also harden, forming tonsil stones that need to be removed by an ENT surgeon.
Bad breath (also known as halitosis) is a common complaint, and often a sign of oral health problems. There are many causes of halitosis and some may be related to systemic health concerns, such as smoking and acid reflux.
One of the most common causes of bad breath is gum disease. This progressive infection of the gums results in pockets that form between teeth and gums, causing bacteria to multiply.
This is a major contributing factor to chronic halitosis. Gum disease also leads to other oral conditions, including bleeding gums and loose teeth.
If you have persistent bad breath, or are experiencing a change in how your teeth fit together when you bite, make an appointment for a dental check-up. Your dentist will examine your mouth and may take X-rays to detect any bone loss or other issues that could lead to gum disease.
Other Medical Conditions
While most bad breath is caused by an issue with the mouth, some people also have persistent bad breath that can point to an underlying health concern. These issues can include indigestion, kidney problems, asthma, and GERD.
Keeping your oral hygiene routine up and visiting the dentist regularly can help you avoid cavities. Besides cavities, poor oral care can also lead to gum disease and dental infections.
Some other medical conditions can cause bad breath, but most of them are rare. If you have other problems, your dentist will be able to diagnose them and treat them.
Dry Mouth: Having a dry mouth inhibits your oral health because it prevents saliva from washing away food particles, bacteria and other debris. It can also promote bacterial growth that can result in bad breath.
Other factors that contribute to bad breath include alcohol, tobacco use and certain foods. These can increase the number of bacteria in your mouth that produce odor-producing compounds.