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Do Cavities Run in Your Family?


Do Cavities Run In Your Family?

A recent article in The Wall Street Journal (posted on Jan 17, 2017), tried to answer the popular question, do cavities run in your family? You can brush, floss, and water pik diligently, however you may still have heard those dreaded words from your dentist, “You have a cavity”.

It’s so easy to just blame it on your parents …well, not exactly. The way enamel is formed on the teeth as a child, is probably the primary reason for blaming heredity. Enamel, in some rare cases, can be thin or weak, but the real enemy is sugar and a “sweet tooth” can be inherited!

Even if you are concerned that you may have the “cavity gene”, there is solid evidence that without sugar you cannot get cavities. Sugar is sticky and clings to your teeth. Foods and condiments such as cereal, ketchup, barbeque sauce, even low-fat yogurt is all surprisingly very high in sugar. Beverages such as sports drinks and chocolate milk are very high in sugar as well. Unfortunately in this country, sugary sodas are the drink of choice and there are people nationwide who now have pretty bad teeth.

So what’s the answer?

If you believe you have a predisposition to tooth decay, follow our recommendations.  It is essential that you keep your routine dental appoints to detect and treat any cavities in their early stage before any discomfort or complications occur.

In conclusion, stop blaming your parents! Tooth decay is a disease spread by specific germs.  Decay spreads easily among family members and can last a life time! Tooth decay is more common among young children, more so than any other chronic illness including asthma and diabetes.

For more information on tooth decay and steps you can take to help prevent it, check out, brought to you by the American Dental Association and be sure to check back to our website, for practice updates, blog posts, and more!


Written By: Dr. Allan M Miller, DDS FAGD