eli5 How do teeth decay over a lifetime but we find teeth in skeletons and fossils all the time?

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eli5 How do teeth decay over a lifetime but we find teeth in skeletons and fossils all the time?

In: Biology

Tooth decay is mainly caused by sugars of which we eat **much** more than our ancestors did, those of our ancestors that did have access to lots of sugars did tend to have tooth decay.

Teeth rot because of the activity of bacteria. Bacteria need food, which we give them when we eat. When we die, we stop feeding the bacteria, and they stop rotting the teeth.

Bodies decay because bacteria eat the flesh. Bones (including teeth) are not edible to bacteria.

However, when *you* eat food, you coat your teeth in edible sugars and other foods. The bacteria then eat these foods and multiply and they excrete acid as they do. That acid is what rots your teeth.

So the only reason teeth decay over your lifetime is because you’re coating them in food bacteria can eat.

That’s why it’s so important to preventing tooth decay to brush that leftover food off.

When we transitioned from hunter/gatherer to agri based civilizations, we began the decline and destruction of the human race. Almost all modern day issues such as cancer, diabetes and tooth decay sprang from agri-based societies.
Carbohydrates breakdown into sugars. Sugars promote tooth decay.
Did you know that most every hunter-gatherer skeleton found has a full set of teeth?

Because ancient peoples did not eat the kind of tooth-decaying crap that is commonly eaten today.