What Is A Cavity?

Cavities are known by many names. We can call them dental caries or tooth decay but in general, cavities refer to a dental infection that leads to holes in the teeth. In order to have a cavity, you need four things:

1. Teeth

2. Bacteria

3. Fermentable carbohydrates (sugary foods)

4. Time

How does this work? Well, we all have bacteria in our mouth. If we don’t brush or floss properly, the bad bacteria in our mouth accumulate on our teeth in hard to reach areas. These bacteria love sugary foods and they process these sugars and produce acid. The acid wears away the surfaces of our teeth resulting in holes and pain! Time is important because every time you have a meal, the bacteria can start an acid attack that lasts for about forty minutes. For example, if you are drinking a glass of sugary pop and it takes you 20 minutes to finish it, you get an acid atttack for those 20 minutes plus forty minutes afterwards (60 mins in total). In our next post, we will examine how we can limit these factors and reduce our chances of getting cavities.