Understanding Dental Caries
Dr Preeti Shirbhate
Thane west, Mar 23, 2018
Dental caries is also called as tooth decay and is very common worldwide. Dental caries forms through a complex interaction over time between acid-producing bacteria and fermentable carbohydrate, and many host factors including teeth and saliva. The disease affects both the crowns and roots of teeth, and it can arise in early childhood as an aggressive tooth decay that affects the primary teeth of infants and toddlers. It can affect enamel, cementum (the outermost layer of the root), and the dentine (the tissue beneath both enamel and cementum).
Demineralisation is the root cause of caries. Diffusion of calcium, phosphate, and carbonate out of the tooth results to cavitation. Dental caries in enamel firstly is seen as white spot lesions, which are small areas of subsurface demineralization.
- Inadequate salivary flow and composition
- High numbers of carcinogenic bacteria
- Insufficient fluoride exposure
- Gingival recession
- Genetic factors
- Poor oral hygiene
- Poor dietary habits
- There are no symptoms in early stages, there is just discoloration of chewing surface of teeth.
- One can experience sensitivity to cold if it reaches Dentin.
- One can experience pain if it reaches deep into dentin.
- One can experience severe pain and sensitivity to hot when it reaches pulp.
- Filling after removing the decayed portion.
- Filling with a calcium hydroxide or MTA base beneath it.
- Endodontic treatment/root canal treatment.