How Do I Prevent Cavities?
From the time that a person is a young child, there is a strong emphasis on taking care of one’s teeth to prevent cavities. Yet for many people, cavities are an unfortunate reality. The good news is that with good oral hygiene and oral health practices, most cavities are preventable. Here’s an overview of what you should know about preventing and treating cavities—
What Causes Cavities?
Teeth are protected by a hard surface, called the tooth enamel. When a tooth starts to decay, it forms carries, also known as cavities. Caries or cavities are tiny openings or holes in the hard surface of the tooth that are caused by decay. Bacteria build-up, sugar, and poor teeth cleaning are all top causes of cavities.
Why Are Cavities Dangerous for Oral Health?
Minor cavities can be treated with cavity fillings, and don’t pose a huge risk to oral health. However, untreated or large cavities can be concerning. If a cavity spreads and isn’t treated, it can even lead to tooth decay and tooth loss. Cavities can also be indicative of other oral health issues, including gingivitis and gum disease.
Tips for Preventing Cavities
As mentioned above, preventing cavities is very possible and easy. By implementing a good oral health routine and seeing your dentist regularly, cavities may be something you never have to worry about! Top tips for preventing cavities include:
- Avoid cavity-causing foods. Soda, sugary foods and beverages, and highly acidic foods can lead to bacteria growth or/and damage tooth enamel. It’s best to consume these foods in very small quantities, if at all.
- Brush teeth after eating. An easy way to avoid cavities is to be diligent about brushing teeth after eating, which helps to kill bad bacteria and remove food particles.
- Floss twice daily. Flossing is the best way to remove food build-up and bacteria growth that’s in the hard-to-reach places in between the teeth. At the very least, you should floss before bed.
- Use a fluoride toothpaste or rinse. Rinsing with fluoride or using a fluoride toothpaste can help to harden enamel and prevent cavities. Talk to your dentist about recommended brands.
- Avoid constant snacking. Constantly snacking reintroduces bacteria to the mouth, as well as fuel for the bacteria to continue growing. If you snack regularly, try rinsing your mouth out after eating.
- Schedule twice-a-year dental cleanings. Visiting your dentist on a regular basis to get dental cleanings is one of the best ways to prevent cavities. Most dentists recommend dental cleanings once every six months.
Reach Out to Our Dentists Today
To learn more about preventing cavities or to schedule a dental check-up or cleaning, call Distinctive Dental Solutions directly. We are here to support you.