No one wants cavities, but do you know exactly what they are, how you get them, and how you can avoid them? Cavities are caused by tooth decay, or damage to your tooth. That tooth decay impacts both the outer coating called enamel and the inner layer called dentin. Tooth decay occurs when foods stay on your teeth. Your mouth uses bacteria to turn those foods into acids, and those acids combined with the bacteria, food debris, and your saliva form plaque. That plaque clings to your teeth and dissolves their enamel which creates holes which we call cavities.
Now that you know what cavities are and how they form, let’s take a look at who gets cavities and how they can be avoided. It’s not true that only children get cavities. They also happen to older adults including seniors. You might be able to tell that you have cavities because of the pain they cause, but that’s not always the case.
The only way to know if you have cavities for sure is to get regular dental checkups. Your dentist will examine your teeth to see if you do have any cavities, and then will begin treatment if you do. Your dentist will most likely remove the decayed part of your tooth using a drill. The hole will then be filled in with a filling. Crowns can also be used for more advanced tooth decay. A root canal may be needed in certain circumstances.
Once you have a cavity, it needs to be treated, but how can you reduce your chances of getting one in the first place? A common misconception is that cavities only occur when you eat too many sweets and don’t brush your teeth enough. It’s true that sugar can eat away at your teeth a little quicker than more healthy foods, but it’s not the only culprit. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day is important, but when it comes to preventing cavities, flossing is more important. That’s because flossing gets rid of those tiny food particles in between your teeth that lead to cavities.
Some of the best ways to prevent cavities from forming are brushing, flossing, not overdoing it with sugar consumption, and getting regular dental checkups. To schedule that all-important appointment with University Associates in Dentistry, give us a call today at (312) 704-5511.
You may already know that bacteria cause tooth decay. That’s true, but it’s not quite the whole story. As your dentist can explain, your mouth contains its own microbiome, which is a community of microorganisms. Some of those bacteria are harmful. They form plaque, which is a biofilm that sticks to the teeth.
You can get the details about biofilm by watching this featured video. You’ll learn that as the microbes digest the sugary foods you eat, they release acid as a waste product. The acid demineralizes the enamel on your teeth, causing tooth decay.
If it’s been too long since your last professional teeth cleaning and exam, schedule an appointment with a general dentist near Chicago right away. Call University Associates in Dentistry at (312) 704-5511, and continue browsing our website to find out more about general and cosmetic dentistry.
CEREC is to dental restorations what fire was to cavemen. This advanced technology opens up incredible opportunities for patients with cavities or a less-than-perfect smile. If your dentist offers CEREC in his or her office, you can receive your dental restorations in just one appointment—no more waiting for impressions to be sent to an off-site lab. CEREC has applications for both cosmetic and general dentistry.
CEREC is an acronym for chairside economical restorations of esthetic ceramic .
- Chairside: The fabrication of the restoration is done in-office, while the patient is in the treatment room.
- Economical: It’s cost-effective dental technology for patients.
- Restorations: CEREC restores your teeth to its full strength and function. CEREC also restores the beauty of a natural smile.
- Esthetic: CEREC restorations are never made from silver amalgam, like traditional fillings. They are tooth-colored for a more pleasing appearance.
- Ceramic: CEREC restorations are made from high-strength ceramic to mimic the composition of a natural tooth.
CEREC is incredibly innovative technology. Surprisingly, many dentists still don’t offer this service. CEREC has also proven to be tough to improve upon. It’s still the only chairside CAD/CAM restoration system available for dental practices.
The CEREC system includes a medical-grade computer and a special camera. After your dentist has prepared your tooth for its restoration, he or she takes a picture of it with the camera. This replaces the conventional dental impression. The computer uses the picture to create a 3D model of the tooth, which your dentist can refine before sending the information to the milling unit.
CEREC technology is known for producing flawless dental crowns, but it can also give patients new onlays and veneers—all in just one visit! Patients commonly need dental crowns after undergoing a root canal. They’re also used to cap permanent dental implants. Dental onlays are useful when the dentist needs to remove an old filling, either for functional or aesthetic reasons. Lastly, CEREC can fabricate beautiful dental veneers, which are thin facades that bond to the visible sides of the teeth. Veneers can cover up a range of imperfections—from stubborn stains to chips and cracks.
You’ll find the latest advances in dental technology at University Associates in Dentistry. During your dental consultation in our Chicago office, we’ll discuss whether CEREC, laser dentistry, digital x-rays, or CT scans could benefit your oral health. Get in touch at (312) 704-5511.
The Link Between Acidic Foods and Your Dental Health
Taking care of your oral health has many facets to it, and your nutrition is an important one. Acidic foods can have a negative impact on your teeth, but you can protect yourself by knowing what you should and shouldn’t eat. You can also work with your dentist to minimize the damage and maintain your beautiful smile. Here’s a look at the link between acidic foods and dental health.
What’s Going On
Certain types of foods and beverages are more acidic than others, and the acids in these products can wear away your tooth enamel. Any acidic food debris left on your enamel can trigger demineralization, which can make your teeth more sensitive. The more demineralization occurs, the closer your dentin will get to being exposed. Remember that brushing your teeth immediately after eating acidic foods can be counterproductive, so drink some water and wait a few minutes before you brush your teeth after a meal.
Which Foods to Be Careful With
If you’re looking to modify your diet so you can keep your dentist happy and your teeth healthy, you should know what foods to stay away from. Ketchup, hot sauce, and products made with tomatoes are acidic, as are lemons, limes, and oranges. Wine and coffee can also wear away at your enamel and cause sensitivity and discomfort. Enjoy these foods, but try to eat them in moderation.
What You Can Do
You don’t have to avoid these foods entirely in order to take care of your oral health. Foods like citrus fruits and berries can be good for you, so you might want to keep them in your diet. Remember to drink water while you eat these types of foods and let your saliva clean out the acidity. Visiting your dentist for regular cleanings can also help to keep you healthy.
In addition to avoiding (or at least cutting back) certain types of foods and drinking plenty of water, be sure to visit your dentist in Chicago on a routine basis. Don’t forget to call University Associates in Dentistry at (312) 704-5511 whenever you are in need of teeth bonding, periodontics, or Invisalign, or stop by our offices to meet with us.
The Link Between Smoking and Your Oral Health
Smoking has been linked to a variety of serious oral health conditions. When you go to this site , you will take a brief look at the link between smoking and your oral health. By quitting smoking, you can reduce your risk of oral cancer, periodontal disease, and tooth discoloration. Your dentist can provide you with additional details about the affect that smoking has on your teeth and smile.
When you are seeking a reputable dentist in Chicago , look no further than University Associates in Dentistry. Whether you need a general dentist or a cosmetic dentist that can provide you with dental implants, you will be able to schedule your procedure at our office. Give us a call at (312) 704-5511 to make your next dental appointment today.
A lot of oral health issues start off slowly and blossom into much more serious problems. Knowing about cavities helps you do what you can to avoid them so you can maintain healthy and beautiful teeth. Use this guide to learn more about cavities:
A Cavity forms Slowly
A cavity is actually a small hole that develops in a tooth. They are often called decay or caries. Cavities start to develop when bacteria in the mouth mix with acid and start to wear down the enamel on the teeth. Without treatment, cavities will continue to grow and might lead to an infection or tooth loss.
A Cavity Has a Range of Symptoms
When a cavity first develops, you might not even notice anything strange in your mouth. Once it becomes bigger, though, it might cause a toothache or severe sensitivity . It might also cause pain when you eat. Sometimes you can see small holes or brown or black stains on the surface of your teeth. If you notice any of these symptoms, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist to see if you need a filling.
You Can Prevent a Cavity
Improving your oral hygiene routine can help you avoid issues with cavities. You should brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush to dislodge food and bacteria that might be stuck on your teeth. You should floss once a day to get rid of food that might be stuck between the tooth and the gums. Visit your dentist regularly to get deeper cleanings and checkups that help you avoid cavities.
University Associates in Dentistry is one of the best dental offices in Chicago. We help you with general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry to ensure that you have the healthiest, most attractive teeth possible. From Invisalign to sleep apnea treatment, we help find the cause of your problems so we can bring you the proper treatment. For more information on our services, visit us online or call (888) 481-6598.
- Dental History
- Gum Disease
- Dental Implants
- Dental Health
- Teeth Whitening
- Sleep Apnea
- Bad Breath
- Dental Veneers
- Sports Dentistry
- Dental Bridges
- Dental Crowns
- Tooth Loss
- CT Scans
- DEXIS CariVu