Senior’s Guide to Dentistry: Root Decay

Over the course of our lives, we put our teeth through a wide variety of experiences, from common eating and drinking to injuries from impact, grinding, and more. While dental hygiene can help to maintain our teeth over a long period of time, there are some risks that we can’t entirely mitigate, no matter how hard we try.

The Problem

While decay can occur at any place along your teeth, one of the most problematic types of decay is root decay. Root decay occurs at the roots of your teeth and can spread faster, since there isn’t any enamel there to protect your teeth. Furthermore, cavities at the root can more easily move to the inside of the teeth, where it can cause serious infection or significant pain.

Decay occurs in the roots more often in seniors as many medications cause dry mouth. Saliva is less prevalent along the roots to begin with, and dry mouth only exacerbates this issue. Furthermore, gum problems that accumulate over time are more likely to expose the roots to damage.

The Solution

As is the case with many dental problems, the solution begins with prevention. Once decay has occurred, we may need to place a dental crown to fix the problem, since traditional fillings don’t stick to porous roots as well as it does to harder enamel. We may also use fluoride treatments to strengthen your teeth.

If you have any questions about root decay or if you would like to schedule a free consultation, please contact our team or make an appointment. Our incredible staff will give you the best dental care possible.

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Sources

http://www.toothwisdom.org/resources/entry/root-decay
http://alabamafamilydentists.com/preventative-care-deters-root-decay/

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