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The Truth About Sugar and Your Teeth

You probably know sugary treats wreak havoc on your teeth. But you might not realize it’s not simply sugar’s fault. It’s what happens after you indulge that leads to tooth decay, gum disease, and other problems.

Maintaining a healthy mouth and teeth requires regular dental checkups. On your first visit to Greenwich Dentistry in Greenwich, Connecticut, we get to know you and your oral health concerns so we can provide the best dental experience possible.

What happens when you eat sugar

Your mouth is home to countless bacteria. Many help you digest food and provide other benefits, but some produce harmful acids when they interact with sugar. These acids eat away at your tooth enamel, a process called demineralization.

When you brush your teeth, you wash away many of these bacteria, and your saliva holds different bacteria that help repair the tooth enamel. You want to make sure you have more of the good bacteria than the bad.

Common misconceptions about cavities

You know tooth decay leads to cavities (dental caries), gum disease, and other dental problems. Tooth decay starts with enamel-destroying bacteria, but it’s not just sugar that can lead to cavities. Here are a few misconceptions about cavities. 

Sugar is the sole cause of cavities 

No matter how much you may indulge your sweet tooth, sugar isn’t the only cause of cavities. 

Carbohydrates like bread and pasta can rot teeth and even lead to dry mouth. If saliva production drops, your mouth has fewer good bacteria to restore tooth enamel. 

Baby teeth cavities don’t count 

Actually, they do. Sure, those tiny teeth fall out at some point, but if your little one gets cavities, it can lead to future problems. Baby teeth cavities can result in issues with jaw structure, bacterial infections, and crooked adult teeth.

You always know when you have a cavity 

It’s hard to ignore a painful tooth or heightened tooth sensitivity to hot and cold. But in the early stages of a cavity, you might not feel anything. That’s yet another reason to have checkups every six months. 

Oral hygiene is just about cavities 

Plaque, tartar, gingivitis, and gum disease are all signs of poor dental hygiene. They can be painful, lead to further tooth decay, and cause tooth loss if not treated properly. 

Fortunately, preventive care goes a long way to preventing a multitude of problems beyond cavities. Brushing your teeth after meals, flossing twice a day, and scheduling dental checkups twice a year can keep your pearly whites healthy and intact. 

Expert dental care

The Greenwich Dentistry team led by Dr. Sean Sutton and Dr. Mark Sutton can help you catch potential dental problems early and treat existing ones before they worsen. To schedule your appointment, call the Cos Cob office today.

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