Amalgam Filling Before
Replaced with Composite Restoration
Cavities are caused by acid. Water has a neutral pH of 7.0, but tooth structure breaks down in an acidic environment with a pH lower than 5.5. There are natural bacteria in everyone’s mouth. These bacteria consume sugar and metabolize it into acids. That is why sugary food causes cavities.
This does not mean that sugar must be avoided at all times. The longer tooth structure is exposed to a pH less than 5.5, the quicker decay develops. That is why sticky, slowly dissolving sugars cause the most problems. Gummy snacks, lollipops, and raisins are worse for your teeth than chocolate. If you indulge in a sugary snack, simply be sure to raise the pH back up to a neutral pH by brushing your teeth or drinking water. Fluoride is a natural element that can be absorbed by enamel to make it even stronger and more resistant to acidic insult.