What Are Cavities, Why Do They Need Fillings, and What Foods Cause Them?

When you see the dentist for a checkup and cleaning, sometimes he or she fills a tooth. You didn’t know you had a cavity. You wonder what you ate that caused it. We’ll explain tooth filling in Highland Park, IL, to you.

How the Mouth Works

Your mouth produces saliva, which washes bacteria and foods off your teeth. When teeth aren’t brushed or flossed, the saliva combines with sugars and bacteria to produce plaque. This sticks to the teeth, eating away at them until their inner materials are affected. This is tooth decay. If it isn’t repaired, the infection spreads into the jawbone and then throughout the body.


The damage begins with holes eaten in the enamel that are known as cavities. They form mostly around the chewing or back teeth, although they can appear in other teeth as well. They’re found in the cracks and crevices of the teeth, between teeth, and around the gums. Cavities begin tiny and grow in time.

Why Cavities Need Fillings

When bacteria in your mouth form into plaque, it creates acids. These acids eat into the enamel. The acid will progressively affect every part of the tooth until a root canal is necessary to save it. A tooth filling in Highland Park prevents all this damage and saves your tooth.

Foods That Contribute to Cavities

Processed foods are sugary and sticky. Candies, gums, pastries, and other processed foods stick to tooth enamel. When enough of it sticks, it causes cavities. Coffee, tea, and soft drinks do much the same damage. Drink more water and eat more fresh fruits and vegetables to avoid dental problems. Your North Suburban Dental professional can give you a list of foods to avoid when you call or visit to learn more about cavities.