Dr. Joel Sendroff
Preventing dental disease focuses
on the following 3 areas:
1 Controlling bacteria on teeth
2 Making teeth more resistant to decay
3 Changing dietary intake
Step one would be controlling dental plaques by disturbing
vegetative oral bacteria (free floating) before they
organize into mature colonies. These mature colonies (dental
plaque) stick to the teeth, absorb sugars from food eaten
and give off acids which are the byproduct of their
The acids attack hard tooth structures, removing calcium
from the outer crown surface (enamel), the outer root
surface (cementum) and the inner tooth structure (dentin).
Simply put, this is the dynamic of cavity formation.
Bacterial byproducts also attack the gum tissues and cause
inflammation, swelling, bleeding, and tartar accumulation
above and below the gum line. Left to continue, the attack
progresses and the bone that holds the teeth firmly in the
jaw begins to erode. Over time, teeth can get loose and be
Another serious side effect is the entr? of oral bacteria
into the blood stream lodging in plaques that collect and
block arteries in the heart, neck and other organs of the
body. These plaques can be life threatening if they break
free and lodge in an organ and cut off blood supply.
Step two would be making existing tooth structure more
resistant to attack from acids. This can be done by the use
of fluorides in mouth rinses, toothpastes and topical
applications at the dental office or at home in specially
adapted plastic trays. Dental sealants also help to keep
plaque from getting into crevices in tooth surfaces and
causing calcium loss. Unfortunately, if decay begins to
spread through the softer dentin layer, it must be stopped
by physical removal and restoration.
The third way we prevent dental disease is by changing our
diet. Sugars in foods are the most devastating source of
fuel for bacterial plaques, Dietary sugars in the form of
sticky candy (caramel, nougat) stick to the teeth for long
periods causing accelerated acid attack. Simple sugars in
soda and sweetened drinks do their damage a little more
Teeth and oral health can produce clues as to what is going
on systemically. What is really called for is a paradigm
shift. We need to begin to focus on healthy eating and a
healthy lifestyle. Ultimately, what is good for us generally
is good for our oral health as well.
articles by Dr. Sendroff:
How can I
control bacterial plaque?
What is the best diet for
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Copyright ? 2006 Joel Sendroff, DDS PC - Providing information on dental procedures including Whitening, Porcelain Veneers and Crowns in the Greater Washington, DC area.
Disclaimer: Dr. Joel Sendroff services patients in Washington, DC (District of Columbia), Chevy Chase, Maryland and Northern Virginia. This site only provides information about dental and cosmetic dental procedures including Whitening, Porcelain Veneers, Crowns, White Fillings, Bonding, Crowns and Veneers, and Dental Implants. It is not meant to be taken as advice.