Health

Tooth Decay and Erosion: Causes and Treatment Options

tooth decay and tooth cavity

Tooth Decay can come at any time, and are often caused as a long term effect of our habits. Whether it is decay or an inflamed pulp, most of the issues are caused due to long standing improper oral hygiene. 

The foremost piece of advice that you would receive from anyone would be to brush your teeth twice daily, floss at least once in two days and do not delay seeing a dentist on noticing any dental issues. But this is something that you should normally do regardless of whether you are suffering from any dental issue or not.

Today, in this blog, you are going to learn about dental decay and erosion distinctly. Along with this, you will also know what precautions to take against the two. So, without a further ado, let’s get straight into it.

Tooth Decay

When bacteria attacks tooth’s surface and leaves the holes in teeth, it is called as tooth decay or tooth cavities. Tooth decay is one of the common problems in teenagers, children and adults around the world.

These are permanently damaged areas in the hard surface of the teeth that develop into tiny opening or holes. If the decay isn’t treated, it gets larger and affects deeper layers of your teeth. Tooth decay can cause in infection or severe pain if not treated on time.

Causes of Tooth Decay 

  • Not brushing your teeth properly is a major cause behind tooth decay. When the food particles stick between two teeth or settle on the surface of a tooth, bacteria begin to breed. Over time it leads to further growth of bacteria or plaque, causing tooth decay.
  • Sugary and starchy food items like sweets, potatoes, sweet beverages, etc. stick to the enamel of your teeth and turn acidic. Further, when they come in contact with the decay-causing bacteria, it makes matters worse.
  • Flossing is a mandatory practice for dental care but sadly enough, it is highly neglected. The bristles of the toothbrush fail to reach some inaccessible spaces in between the teeth and not flossing these areas leads to decay of the teeth.

What should you do?

The remedies are simple. As mentioned earlier, it is best to use toothpaste that has a good amount of fluoride content. Apart from this, you may:

  • Consider dental sealants that seal off grooves and crannies, protecting tooth enamel from plaque and acid.
  • Eat tooth healthy food such as fresh fruits and vegetables and avoid food that gets stuck in the grooves and pit of your teeth.
  • If the problem is grave, you should visit a dentist before it starts affecting the nearby teeth as well.

Tooth Erosion

Dental erosion is the loss of your teeth surface due to the food (containing acid) you eat or drink, or acids coming up from your stomach. These acids basically dissolve the crystals that make up your teeth. As effects of tooth erosion, teeth may appear yellow, cracked and chiped.

Causes of Tooth Erosion 

  • Many things that we eat and drink are acidic like energy drink, vitamin water, flavored lollies, wine, etc. But, erosion is basically linked to a few acids like citric acid, sodium citrate, and phosphoric acid.
  • At times the enamel chips off due to an injury or bacteria, causing gradual erosion.
  • With poor dental health leading to dry mouth and low salivary flow (xerostomia), problems including acid reflux disease, and low calcium, are reasons enough to erode your teeth.
  • Grinding of teeth can weaken the teeth enamel and gradual chipping results in staining and of course, erosion.

What should you do?

  • Avoid using abrasive toothpastes.
  • See a dentist once every 6 months besides brushing and flossing regularly. 
  • Avoid too much of starchy, sugary and acidic foods and drinks to let your teeth live longer. 
  • Consider wearing a custom made dental splint if you have a habit of grinding your teeth at night.
  • Keep a check on what you are snacking on
  • Drink more water throughout the day
  • Start consuming dairy products.
  • Use a straw when you drink acidic drinks.
  • Chew sugar-free gum between meals.
  • Ask your dentist if sealants may be helpful for your dental condition.

Healthy teeth are a result of your care and a gift in itself. Like any other body parts, teeth are also crucial.

Yet there are several diseases and issues that concern dental health if proper care and treatment are not followed. Don’t delay and get the required treatment at the earliest. 


Do away with such dental problems where it becomes painful as well as embarrassing for you. Many dental clinics offer you the most impressive dental services that include tooth whitening, tooth extraction, RCT of teeth, and treatment of other dental issues.

You can contact the best dentist near you and get in touch with a dental expert today for an assured treatment.

Author’s Bio: 

Clove Dental the largest chain of multi-specialty dental clinics with 870+ qualified professionals and 325+ clinics all over India offering a comprehensive set of oral health care services including root canal treatment, dental implant, tooth extraction, kid’s dentistry, braces & aligners cosmetic dentistry, and general dentistry.