The tooth is made up of two hard tissues covering the nerve(soft) tissue /pulp.
Hard tissues are:
- Enamel is translucent, a shiny structure made up of hydroxyapatite crystals and is supposed to be the hardest tissue present in the entire human body, even harder than the bones.
- Dentine is a hard tissue having sensory nerve endings of cells which makes dentine a sensitive tissue yet a very hard tissue.
TOOTH BEING SO HARD, STILL CAVITIES, HOW?
Cavities are caused by bacteria which are always present in the mouth. These bacteria consume the food you eat and digest as you digest. That means if the food is simpler for you to digest eg. Sugar, bread etc., the bacteria can digest it simply too. If the food is sticky and simple to digest, the food stays on the surface of the tooth for a longer period of time and the bacteria gets more time to consume it. The more food is consumed by the bacteria, the more by-product is produced, which is an acid, which dissolves the hard tissue of the teeth slowly but steadily.
HOW IGNORANCE COSTS YOU
Generally, a decay/cavity does not give pain till it reaches the depth of dentine or close to the pulp (nerve tissue). Bacterial infection/cavities may take many weeks or few months or years to reach the pulp. The biggest mistake a patient makes is correlating pain to the intensity of infection. By the time the patient realises about infection and pain, it’s already too late to just do a filling to restore the hard tissue.
Hence regular check-ups are suggested for a period of 4-6 months so that a cavity can be identified at its initial stage and it can be filled.
With this, the patient saves a:
- Lot of time
- Significant amount of money as Root canal treatment is costlier than filling.
- Most importantly the patient saves a lot of precious, natural structure of the teeth.
As Dentists, we advise:
- Regular dental check-ups
- No self-medication without a thorough check-up
- Do not ignore small sensitivity and pain as they are primary signs by the human body of infection reaching the soft and sensitive tissues.