Lucio H. Kim DDS

Why do I get cavities??

April 17, 2016
Posted By: Lucio H. Kim, DDS
Cavities in Glendale CA, Dr. Lucio H. Kim, DDS

When teeth erupt through the gums and you can start to see them, they are vulnerable to cavities. The plaque (bacteria) has something to cling on to. And if left there for a period of time, will start to cause decay.  The back teeth are more prone due to the fact that they are harder to clean and have grooves and pits that hide the plaque better.

Causes for Cavities

Certain foods and drinks.  We’ve been told this ever since we were little, but refined sugars increase the food source for the bacteria and make them more virulent to cause cavities easier.  Soft drinks keep dentists in business.

Frequent snacking or sipping. Nibbling on sugary things a lot throughout the day or sipping the sodas all day long will give the bacteria a constant food source and makes it hard for your body to fight off the decay.

Not Brushing or FLOSSING:  This seems like conventional wisdom, but still needs to be reinforced.  See the “I don’t care if you brush” blog.

Not using Fluoride: Either in toothpaste or in your drinking water.  It’s good for your teeth.

Your age: Younger people can fight off cavities better. But their oral hygiene doesn’t tend to be as good.  Older people with medications or certain medical treatments leave their mouth dry (called Dry mouth). Saliva is your body’s major way of fighting off cavities, so if your saliva shuts down, then it shifts the balance to favor the bacteria. 

Previous dental work:  Worn, old, cracked crowns and fillings leave areas that are open and allow bacteria to leak into them.  Then they are hidden and protected.  And they have free reign to grow and cause issues.  Catching them early is key to avoiding major problems instead of an easy fix.

And the last one: Genetics.  No, you don't have "soft" teeth.  But your immune system may not be keyed in to fight the bacteria that causes cavities.  This is very difficult to battle and deals with because even with all the right moves, you still get cavities.  Very frustrating!  But work with your dentist to find a plan to help win this uphill battle. 



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