Have you seen a tunnel? What does it look like from a distance?
If you have seen one, we bet you know what we are getting to. If you see a black spot on your tooth – it’s caused by tooth decay. Let’s get to the bottom of it.
A black spot on one’s teeth is a very common occurrence, but it still needs your immediate attention. The black spot is a cavity caused by tooth decay. Here is how they are formed and the common causes –
- Not eating right – Habit of binging on foods with high sugar content and then not following right oral health practices after that, can cause cavities. The sugar is broken down to acid by the bacteria in the mouth. This acid weakens the enamel at places where the plaque is extensive. Hence, you get a cavity at that place.
- Not following the right oral habits – The importance of regular brushing and flossing cannot be stated enough. If you don’t follow these practices, plaque would accumulate in the gaps of your teeth and on the surface. Plaque is basically a layer of bacteria, which is very damaging to the teeth. The bacteria in the teeth convert sugars to acid, which as mentioned above damages the enamel.
To cut the long story short, you have a black spot because bacteria have been encouraged to thrive on the tooth surface, causing it to damage the tooth.
If these cavities are not treated on time, they can reach deep, expose roots, and cause severe pain and sensitivity.
How to detect black spots or cavities?
This is precisely why it is recommended to get regular dental checkups. During the visits, the health of your teeth can be determined. Physical examination of teeth or X-rays can be used to find out cavities.
Second is of course a more painful way. You detect them one day when they really start looking ugly or are causing pain & sensitivity.
Now before you freak out, you must know that there is always a solution depending on the degree of damage.
- Calcium or fluoride treatment – Since cavity is caused due to weakening of enamel, calcium or fluoride can be applied to strengthen it. This treatment is best when the cavity is detected early.
- Fillings – If the cavity is formed, but is not very deep, it can be filled with a silver amalgam, porcelain or something more expensive like a composite material.
- Root canal – This is needed when the cavity reaches deep to the root. The infected pulp is removed, the canals are filled with a permanent material and a temporary filling is given to seal the canals.
Though we are all aware of most of these dental terms, we don’t really pay attention to it unless we see that black spot one day. Why reach that day?
Follow healthy oral habits, a balanced diet and visit the dentist regularly for cleaning or checkups. That should address most of the concerns.