Over the past few years we have seen a dramatic increase in cavities- not just in kids but even more so in adults!  Many adults are asking “Why am I getting cavities now when I haven’t had any for years?”

The Culprits!

There are many reasons why we are seeing more cavities in adults. Some of the reasons include:

  • Medications
  • Dry mouth
  • Acidity of our saliva
  • Loss of buffering capacity of our saliva
  • Compromised oral hygiene as we age
  • Acidity of our foods
  • Reduced water consumption as we age

The Decay Pattern Is Different

As kids, we tended to get cavities on the biting surfaces of our teeth as well as the sides of our teeth.  As we age,the pattern changes. The main areas of decay are on the root surfaces frequently extending below the gumline.  Unfortunately, this is the absolute worst place to develop cavities. Not only are these areas difficult to restore but the long-term  success rate is compromised.

Prevention  Is Key To Success

As with all forms of tooth decay,the best approach to addressing adult tooth decay is prevention. Fluorides are definitely important tools to preventing adult tooth decay, but it is also important to evaluate and address the other causes. While medications may not be able to be changed, addressing the dry mouth and acidity caused by the medications can be addressed. For example, there are many products available that help to combat dry mouth.  While no one product works universally for all people,here at Expressions Dental, we have a number of “tools in our toolbox” that allow us to come up with a combination that works for most people. In addition, we are continually evaluating new products so we are sure to stay on top of this rapidly changing field.

The Foods We Eat!

Research has shown that the foods we eat have a huge impact on the acidity of our saliva and even our entire system. There are many food recommendations for people who are fighting acidity. If you are interested in receiving a list, just e­mail us at  www.info@expressions-dental.com and we will be happy to e-mail it to you.


Keep smilin’!

Dr. Clary

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