Dental Carries

What is dental carries?

Dental carries is a term used by doctors to refer to tooth cavity. The Denali Family Dental Center and Anchorage dentist, Dr. David Maisey, explain that cavities are caused by certain bacteria in the mouth. These bacteria produce acids that corrode the teeth. There are many types of bacteria that survive in the human mouth. The bacteria gradually multiply if the sticky film called plaque is not removed. Plaque is a mixture of saliva food debris and other natural compounds. Plaque easily forms in cracks in the teeth, between the teeth, around dental dentures and implant as well as near the gum line.

Bacteria in the mouth is responsible for converting carbohydrates in to acids. These acids that are formed eat away the enamel slowly. The enamel therefore develops its. At first the pits are so tiny that they are invisible. As the corrosion progresses the pits start becoming visible. The decay then starts in the part of the tooth called dentin this part is softer than the enamel. When these two parts are corroded a cavity starts to form. If left untreated the decay will progress to the inner parts of the tooth up to the roots and gum.

Symptoms of carries

Dental carries have no symptoms in the beginning. At the initial stages they are hard to detect. As the decay continues it may be detected before the cavity progresses.  The teeth will start becoming more sensitive to cold and hot food as well as sweet foods.


Each time you visit a dentist they will check your teeth for any signs of dental carries. They probe the teeth sing an explorer. The aim is to detect pits and cracks. These are the early signs of carries. Dentists will also use x-rays to find problems in teeth. These can show any anomalies in a tooth. They are also used to determine whether a cavity has reached the pulp or not.

A newer method for diagnosis of cavity involves the use of a liquid dye. The dentist brushes it over the surface of your teeth. The dentist will then require you to rinse of the dye with water. The dye will rinse of completely on healthy parts of the tooth but will remain in areas with decays.


The most effective way to prevent carries is to decrease the plaque in the mouth. Plaque harbors the bacteria that cause carries. Plaque is eliminated by brushing teeth and flossing teeth. Mouth wash is also used to kill bacteria in the mouth. Some other types of mouth wash neutralize the environment of the mouth such that it is not acidic. The bacteria that cause carries survives only in an acidic environment. So if you are not in a place where brushing your teeth is a viable option, using a mouth wash is not a bad idea.

Another preventive measure involves avoiding sugary food. These foods promote the production of acids that corrode the teeth.