Cavities are such a common problem that most people expect to need a filling every now and then. In many cases, the whole hide and seek game with cavities slows down quite a bit once we hit adulthood and have gained the know-how we need to cleanse the mouth of acid and debris. Typically, brushing and flossing are all that a person needs to manage healthy enamel – and routine dental checkups and cleanings, of course. But sometimes – sometimes fighting cavities is just plain tough.
Why so stubborn?
If the fight against cavities seems to be never-ending, first know that you’re not alone. We are here to help each of our patients discover what could be causing their susceptibility, and to support good oral hygiene. Let’s look at some of the reasons that cavities may put up a good fight.
Your teeth are too close together
The spacing between teeth is a key element in how easy it is to maintain oral health. Too much space and bacteria can accrue. At least when there is extra space, though, you can get a string of floss through the area. The bigger problem occurs when teeth are crowded or overlapped. The tight crevices between two teeth provide a safe haven for bacteria in the sticky plaque that escapes the toothbrush.
Your teeth have deep pits
Don’t worry, everyone has deep pits in their back teeth. Without the “highs and lows” on your molars, you wouldn’t be able to sufficiently break apart your food. These grooves are necessary, but they can also present quite the problem if they trap debris and bacteria, which they often do. Dental sealants are commonly applied to children’s teeth, but this preventive treatment is not reserved for young people only. Adults who struggle with cavities on back teeth can also benefit from an additional barrier.
You have heartburn
What? What does heartburn have to do with cavities? Actually, any condition in which stomach acid is refluxed into the esophagus can also mean lingering acid in the mouth. Individuals who consistently struggle with gastroesophageal reflux disease may also find that they develop more cavities.