Tooth decay bacteria

IMAGE NUMBER: E00208 LICENSE: RIGHTS MANAGED

Tooth decay bacteria. Colored Scanning Electron Micrograph (SEM) of bacteria and plaque particles found in a decaying tooth. Different bacteria are seen amongst brown plaque. Tooth decay is caused by the action of bacteria on the sugars in plaque. Bacteria in the plaque feed on sugars in the food particles producing acid as a waste product. This acid corrodes the enamel coating of the teeth, causing cavities (holes) to develop. When the sensitive region within the tooth is exposed, toothache occurs. Cavities are prevented by regular brushing.

Credit: Eye of Science / Science Source

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