The current understanding and professional consensus regarding dental caries, or "tooth decay," is that it represents an infectious process via a biofilm composed of various bacteria and bacterial bio-products that break teeth down. Once the teeth are significantly affected by this process--which may occur with or without pain - a restoration such as a filling, onlay or crown is required to replace the infected tooth structure. Replacement of an existing restoration (recurrent decay) is sometimes required as well, or even an extraction of the tooth if it is completely unrestorable.
There are currently two accepted approaches to manage this disease process. The traditional, or surgical approach, addresses the effects of this infection by focusing on restoring the teeth as they present with the tooth decay. The medical, or preventive approach, addresses the underlying infection prior or concurrent with the restoration phase of treatment.
CAMBRA, or "Caries Management by Risk Assessment," is a popular technique that is used to evaluate and determine one's risk for caries. This approach focuses on understanding the individual patient's risk factors that cause or contribute to the disease process of tooth decay. These risk factors may include diet, specific medical conditions, medications, genetic predispositions or habits, etcetera. By understanding the individual's risk factors, concrete and measurable steps can be taken to eradicate the disease or greatly reduce the risk of tooth decay and its reoccurance.
Tooth decay from dental caries can pose a number of problems, including not only the decay of a tooth's structure and roots, but can lead to the extraction of teeth, gum disease, and other problems within your mouth that may require additional time and treatment by your dentist.
In order to accurately determine your risk for dental caries, it is important that you go to Dr. Cruz for a CAMBRA evaluation and assessment. One call and one appointment can get you the answers you need to determine your risk factors and come up with the appropriate way to prevent dental caries.
« Back to Causes of Dental Caries Home Page
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- Dental CAMBRA in Laguna Niguel - Laguna Niguel avoids decay with a CAMBRA evaluation in the dental office