Los Angeles, CA (PressExposure) July 10, 2009 -- One of the most frequent and practically one of the most severe cases of tooth disease is dental caries. Dental caries, also known as tooth decay or cavity, is a disease where bacterial processes damage hard tooth structure. These tissues progressively break down, producing dental cavities (holes in the teeth). Today, according to the dentist burbank [http://www.alhambradental.com/blog], dental caries remains one of the most common diseases throughout the world.
Cause of dental caries
Tooth decay is caused by specific types of acid-producing bacteria which cause damage in the presence of fermentable carbohydrates such as sucrose, fructose, and glucose. The mineral content of teeth is sensitive to increases in acidity from the production of lactic acid. Specifically, a tooth (which is primarily mineral in content) is in a constant state of back-and-forth demineralization and remineralization between the tooth and surrounding saliva. When the pH at the surface of the tooth drops below 5.5, demineralization proceeds faster than remineralization which results in the ensuing decay.
Depending on the extent of tooth destruction, various treatments can be used to restore teeth to proper form, function, and aesthetics, but there is no known method to regenerate large amounts of tooth structure. Instead, dental health organizations advocate preventive and prophylactic measures, such as regular oral hygiene and dietary modifications, to avoid dental caries.
Treatments to dental carries
Destroyed tooth structure does not fully regenerate, although remineralization of very small carious lesions may occur if dental hygiene is kept at optimal level. For the small lesions, topical fluoride is sometimes used to encourage remineralization. For larger lesions, according to the dentist burbank [http://www.alhambradental.com/blog], the progression of dental caries can be stopped by removing the infected area of the tooth. The goal of treatment is to preserve tooth structures and prevent further destruction of the tooth.
A dental handpiece ("drill") is used to remove large portions of decayed material from a tooth. Once the decay is removed, the missing tooth structure would require a dental restoration of some sort to return the tooth to functionality and aesthetic condition.
Dental restorations and materials
Restorative materials include dental amalgam, composite resin, porcelain, and gold. Composite resin and porcelain can be made to match the color of a patient's natural teeth and are thus used more frequently when aesthetics is a concern, though composite restorations are not as strong as dental amalgam and gold. Some dentists consider the latter as the only advisable restoration for posterior areas where chewing forces are great.
When the decay is too extensive, there may not be enough tooth structure remaining to allow a restorative material to be placed within the tooth. Thus, a crown may be needed. According to the dentist burbank [http://www.alhambradental.com/blog], this restoration appears similar to a cap and is fitted over the remainder of the natural crown of the tooth. Crowns are often made of gold, porcelain, or porcelain fused to metal.