Our mouths are havens for bacteria. This is heavily influenced by our diets and the temptation to put things in our mouth to chew on (pen lids, finger nails) etc. Sugar in the foods and drinks we consume are effectively fueling the bacteria which produces the acid that attacks our teeth. This is what leads to the holes in our teeth (cavities/caries).
It’s important we do our daily oral hygiene rituals as it helps to take a proactive approach to removing the build up of bacteria. However, sometimes we may not be as thorough as we intended, which is why it is so important to regularly come and see a dental hygienist.
In the early stages of tooth decay cavities will start to appear in the teeth. Initially you may not even notice them as pain is not always the first sign. When it gets to the pain stage it can mean that bacteria is creeping into the tooth and causing issues around the nerve. If this becomes infected, to save the tooth you may need a root canal. In the worst case scenarios, you could potentially lose a tooth and then will need to consider a tooth replacement option.
We always advise our patients to invest time in their oral hygiene routine and to see our hygienist regularly as in the long run it can save you a lot of hassle (with complications) and money (to fix any complications).