LEONARD E. MORGAN, CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LEONARD E. MORGAN, CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Tooth care. Conceptual artwork depicting care for teeth showing a plaster stuck on a molar. This may represent treatment for tooth decay (dental caries). Teeth can be damaged by the build-up of food on them, which allows bacteria to breed there. The bacteria produce an acid which attacks the teeth, gradually exposing the soft nerves and blood supply (pulp). The decay can only be stopped by removing the entire affected area and filling it with a sterile plug, usually made of metal. Prevention of caries is better than the cure, and regular brushing and a sensible diet (avoiding acidic and sweet foods) greatly reduces the risk.
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