While the research about exact numbers is still underway, there are 700 types of bacteria that are present in our mouths. They are everywhere from inner cheek lining to saliva to palate to our tongue. It may be interesting for you to know that they can double their amounts in every 5 hours. With this fact in mind, it becomes pretty understandable why our teeth get a layer of a film developed on their surface. Now, the bacterial balance in our mouths is balanced by saliva which washes away the excess bacteria. But this process of washing away is done in the day time. When you sleep, the saliva production is slowed down. This lack of saliva allows bacterial balance to get disturbed.
Now, it may be worth mentioning here that not all types of oral bacteria are harmful. In fact, most types tend to coexist with the viruses, fungi and protozoa. However, the major damage is done by a few bad characters which surely make the term ‘bacteria’ to be perceived as something problematic. Now, it may be interesting for you that cavity and gum disease are actually the infections which result due to the action of only a few strains of bacteria.
Sugar is the main culprit
Yes, you heard it right. It is mainly due to the fact that bacteria need energy to survive. If you provide bad bacteria with fermentable carbohydrates, they are most likely to take control of the bacterial balance of your oral cavity. Note that various forms of sugar have these carbohydrates which the bad bacteria need in order to do what they do. When these bacteria are provided with this sustenance, they release an acidic waste which can be pretty harmful for the enamel of your teeth.
If you have ever seen acid being poured on concrete, the reaction between concrete and acid could give you a nice demonstration regarding what acidic waste can do to your teeth. However, it doesn’t happen in days. The consistent attack of acid on the teeth can make tooth enamel to be eroded. This consistent attack can lead to the opening of a cavity.
The acidic waste damages not only the tooth enamel but also the gum lining. This irritation in the gums can lead to the enhanced vulnerability of gums against bacterial attack. As a result, gum disease may start to appear.
Although you can always go for the treatment of cavities and gum disease, there is a way you can avoid the occurrences of these infections by taking care of your oral health in a proactive manner. Brushing and flossing is very important in this regard. Moreover, you have to make sure that the foods you eat are not disturbing the bacterial balance of your oral cavity. Furthermore, you need to visit your dentist in every 6 months to get your oral cavity fully analyzed.