What is Tooth Decay Actually?

Tooth decay is a form of tooth decay caused by bacteria found in dental plaque. These bacteria transform sugars in food into acids, which attack tooth enamel. Over time, this can lead to the formation of cavities.

Treatment of tooth decay in 2023

In 2023, the treatment of tooth decay depends on its stage of development. There are two main approaches:

Direct processing:

  • Advanced stages: When decay has penetrated deep into the tooth, affecting the dentin or reaching the pulp, treatment is necessary. This often includes fillings, crowns, or even root canal treatments if the nerve is damaged.
  • Radiology: X-rays clearly show these levels of degradation. Deep dark areas indicate advanced decay requiring treatment.

Remineralization:

  • Early stages: For superficial caries, where the enamel is just beginning to demineralize, a remineralization approach is often considered.
  • Methods: This may include the use of fluoride, either in topical applications at the dentist’s office or at home via fluoridated toothpastes, as well as dietary changes and improved oral hygiene.
  • Radiology: X-rays show white spots or less dense areas, indicating early stages of decay that can be treated with remineralization.

Radiological examples:

  • Treatment Needed: X-ray images show deep, dark areas, often close to the dental pulp, indicating significant destruction of tooth structure. These cavities usually require invasive treatment to remove the decay and restore the tooth.
  • Possible remineralization: X-rays reveal white spots or light shadow areas on the enamel, without deep penetration. These areas are often treatable with remineralization methods, aimed at restoring the hardness of the enamel before decay progresses.

Conclusion:

The management of dental caries in 2023 is based on an accurate assessment of the stage of the disease. Treatments vary from invasive methods for advanced caries to remineralization strategies for early stages. Radiology plays a key role in determining the therapeutic approach. Prevention, through good oral hygiene and a balanced diet, remains essential to avoid the appearance and progression of cavities.

Note that this article is a simplified overview and treatment for cavities can vary depending on many individual factors. It is always advisable to consult a dental health professional for personalized advice.