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For the hearing impaired:

Hello, I’m Dr. Michaelangelo Aust with Modern Family Dentist and welcome to today’s bite size bit. Today we’re going to talk about: What is a Cavity? What I want you to think about 350 to 650 types of bacteria that live in our mouth. I want you to think about bacteria, just like a ball. What happens when we eat is that the bacteria in our mouth are going to eat whatever we feed ourselves. Bacteria go through a specific process which allows them to divide as they start eating. They also produce acid. The division cycle (a generation, if you will) happens within just a couple of minutes. You go through a generational divide within just a few minutes and pretty soon, these bacteria begin to multiply and you have a lot of bacteria producing a lot of acid in your mouth. Acid can come from bacteria. It can also come from the food that we eat. Soft drinks, but also fruits can all be sources of acid in our mouth.

We all know what enamel is. Enamel is the hard outer layer of our tooth. underneath the enamel are more layers that are soft. The acid begins to erode away at the enamel and make a hole in the tooth. The bacteria can crawl in there and establish a home. They continue to produce acid and it gets bigger and bigger. Every time you eat, the bacteria are producing acid and dividing. That is why, within a matter of 4-6 months from your last dental check-up, you ca wind up with another dental cavity. The really damaging part is that once the bacteria have eaten through the outer shell of your tooth and they get inside, it’s like a grenade goes off. They really move rapidly, because remember, the inside of your tooth is soft. Then you have a real problem on your hands. This is why you get pain. If you wait so long with a cavity that it produces pain, that’s really the end of the cycle. The first part you actually don’t feel. That’s why you need to get to the dentist before you feel the cavity. That’s nature’s little trick. This is Dr. Michaelangelo Aust with Modern Family Dentists and I hope you enjoyed today’s bit size bit.