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Tooth Decay

Also called: Cavities, Dental caries

Summary

You call it a cavity. Your dentist calls it tooth decay or dental caries. They're all names for a hole in your tooth. The cause of tooth decay is plaque, a sticky substance in your mouth made up mostly of germs. Tooth decay starts in the outer layer, called the enamel. Without a filling, the decay can get deep into the tooth and its nerves and cause a toothache or abscess.

To help prevent cavities

  • Brush your teeth every day with a fluoride toothpaste
  • Clean between your teeth every day with floss or another type of between-the-teeth cleaner
  • Snack smart - limit sugary snacks
  • See your dentist or oral health professional regularly

Start Here

  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)

Prevention and Risk Factors

  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research) - PDF

Treatments and Therapies

  • (Food and Drug Administration)

Related Issues

  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Cancer Institute) Also in
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research)

Specifics

  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)

Statistics and Research

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research)
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Also in
  • (National Center for Health Statistics)

Clinical Trials

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

Reference Desk

  • (Academy of General Dentistry)
  • (Academy of General Dentistry)

Find an Expert

  • (Academy of General Dentistry)
  • From the National Institutes of Health Also in

Children

  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • (Nemours Foundation)
  • (American Academy of Pediatrics) Also in
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • (U.S. Preventive Services Task Force) - PDF
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research)
  • (Nemours Foundation) Also in

Seniors

  • (Merck & Co., Inc.) Also in

Patient Handouts

www.all-diplomas.com

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