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Tooth decay

Tooth decay is a common problem that occurs when acids in your mouth dissolve the outer layers of your teeth.


Decay is caused by sugar in our diet. Bacteria present in most peoples saliva breakdown this sugar.

As the sugar is broken-down, it releases acid. This acid eventually penetrates the tooth surface. Once the surface of the tooth is penetrated, further bacteria enter the tooth and ‘eat away’ the tooth from the inside.

The earlier decay is diagnosed, the more straight forward the treatment. Early decay almost always causes no symptoms.

Decay in the latter stages produces sensitivity to hot, cold or sweet foods. As decay moves closer to the nerve of the tooth (called pulp) it may cause pain, but this is not always the case.

Once the decay causes toothache, it will either require removal or a root canal treatment. It is, therefore, important patients attend regularly for dental check ups.

At your check up, your dentist can offer helpful advice, identify any areas of concern or diagnose any problems as early as possible

Before decay causes pain, it can usually be repaired with a filling.

Click here for advice on  how to prevent decay.

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