White Spot Lesions
As a general dental office, preventing tooth decay is one of our top concerns at Redwood Dental Smiles in Castro Valley. Regular brushing and flossing is the best defense against tooth decay, but some parts of the teeth, especially the sides and the areas around orthodontic brackets, are particularly vulnerable. That’s why we want our patients to be able to recognize incipient lesions, also known as white spots.
When teeth are exposed to acid, there will be a period before they form cavities when molecules are being dissolved and the enamel is weakening. This can happen when the acid is being regurgitated from the stomach, but on the front teeth, it is likelier to be caused by bacteria metabolizing food debris and excreting acid as a waste product. The more sugar is on the teeth, the more bacteria consume and the more acid they excrete. As enamel dissolves, it turns a chalky white that is noticeably different from enamel’s natural color.
It only takes about thirty days for a white spot to begin turning into a cavity. When patients notice one, they need to redouble their brushing efforts. Although enamel lost to a cavity cannot be regrown, a white spot can usually be reversed. If not, we can discuss cosmetic options such as veneers with the patient.
Redwood Dental Smiles is operated by Dr. Vijay Munagala at 20212 Redwood Rd, Suite 101, Castro Valley, California, 64546. To schedule an appointment, visit Redwood Dental Smiles or call 510-886-6416.