Dental Problems

What Causes Tooth Decay? -Top 5 Reasons

Tartar, plaque, bacterial action, sugary products, oily and fried food, frequent snacking, and lack of proper oral hygiene are the immediate reply to the question What Causes Tooth Decay? We all are aware of it but hardly take our oral hygiene seriously. Tooth ache, hole in teeth visible to naked eye, wearing and tearing of the protective layer of enamel, and bleeding gums are some of the symptoms it might result in. Brushing, flossing, and using mouth wash can save the damage.

What Causes Tooth Decay? - Top 5 Reasons!

What Causes Tooth Decay?


  1. Lack Of Oral Hygiene:

    Brushing the teeth at least twice a day will help clean the trapped food grains and prevent any adverse bacterial action from occurring. Flossing between teeth can help get rid of the food grains that were not cleaned with brushing the teeth, and finally, rinsing the mouth. Mouth wash kills bacteria and reaches the extreme corners that cannot be cleaned by using the other two methods. In the absence of oral hygiene bacterial growth in the mouth results in plaque and tartar which gradually causes tiny holes in the teeth.

  2. Bacteria Infection:

    Bacteria that live in the mouth form a sticky layer around teeth which help them trap the tiny food particles. If these are left unattended or are not cleaned for more than 20 minutes then they can form a layer of plaque. Mineralization of plaque creates a layer of tartar. All these are potential threats to healthy teeth and over a period can be harmful. They destroy the protective layer of enamel and create tiny pits. Gradually reaching the well guarded pulp, nerves and tissues, and causing immense pain and discomfort.

  3. Eating Snacks Frequently:

    Binging on sweets, sugary products, salty snacks, and drinking colas is another major cause that will cause acidic reaction and tear the enamel. Frequent snacking, eating ice creams, junk food, chocolate, cake, cookies, and candy are some of the foods that provide a healthy environment for the bacteria to grow and create plaque within 20 minutes of eating and resulting in pits.
    But not all snacks are bad! Eating raw vegetables, fruits, drinking juice, yogurt, cheese, dry fruits etc that are low in sugar content and high in nutritional value are good.

  4. Smoking:

    Nicotine in tobacco and other chemicals are abrasive in nature. It also promotes plaque formation and hardens it further, making it difficult to remove. Smokers are 3 times more at risk of developing caries than non-smokers.

  5. Low Fluoride Levels:

    Low fluoride levels in water can promote growth of plaque by bacteria. Use toothpaste with fluoride content to control and also reverse early caries. Fluoride has the ability to reduce and inhibit plaque formation.

These are a few answers to the common query ‘what causes tooth decay?’but it can be reversed or stopped easily by visiting a dentist every six months.

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