How To Prevent Tooth Decay: What Works & What Hurts

prevent tooth decay
Tooth decay occurs when the tooth structure is damaged, acids produced from the activities of bacteria in the mouth are primary suspect. Acids are produced when bacteria breaks down sugar from plaque in the mouth. If plaque is allowed to build up, it attracts lots of harmful bacteria that can cause tooth decay. Certain activities such as frequent snacking, taking of sugary foods and not cleaning your teeth after results to plaque buildups.
The reason why you should fight plaque is that it adheres to your teeth and builds up over time. The acids produced from there attacks your tooth and can eventually cause tiny openings or holes in your teeth. Without proper treatments, this holes can grow larger, leading to tooth loss. The acids will continue to eat away the protective layers of your teeth and will eventually lead to the exposure of the delicate parts of the teeth.
These are the basic things you need to know about tooth decay. However, apart from plaque buildups, there are also other possible causes of tooth decay. Aging and certain diseases can also cause tooth decay. In one of the post that I wrote earlier, I revealed the disease that can cause tooth decay.  You can see the post later, but for now, I will show different ways to protect your teeth from tooth decay or cavity.
The methods am going to reveal here are applicable to any member of your family. Anybody can have tooth decay, it’s mostly common in children, teenagers and adults. So taking good care of your teeth plays an important role in maintaining your overall health. It can also help you to save money and time used in treating preventable oral problems.

How To Prevent Tooth Decay

  1. Brush flouride toothpastes : you’ll need to look after your teeth and gums in order to prevent tooth decay. Yes, everyone knows the importance of toothpastes in maintaining clean and healthy mouth.  But with lots of toothpastes available in the market today, knowing the right ones can be helpful. When selecting your toothpaste, ensure that it’s safe and accepted by accepted American Dental Association (ADA). Fluoride-containing toothpaste are highly recommended if you want to prevent tooth decay. So ensure that you keep your teeth clean by brushing with fluoride toothpaste at least twice a day. Regular brushing including after meal works just fine.
  2. Avoid smoking : if you smoke then you chance of having tooth decay is very high. Anything that can interfere with the production of saliva in your mouth is not a good idea. Smoking and excess tobacco produces compounds that interfere with saliva production. Little production of saliva results to bacteria buildups and can eventually cause damages to the teeth. The thing you should know here is that saliva contains strong antibacterial and cleaning properties that helps to maintain healthy teeth and gums. Vegetables and fresh fruits helps to increase saliva flow, taking fruits and vegetables daily is actually a good idea.
  3. Cut down on sugary foods : to prevent tooth decay, cutting down on the amount of sugary and starchy foods and drinks is very helpful. Frequent taking of sugary foods especially between meals or within an hour before going to bed increases the rate of plaque and bacteria buildups. Things like chocolate or candies gets stuck between your teeth for long periods, ensure that you brush after eating them. Am not saying that you should avoid eating sugary foods or drinks completely, but if you must take them, ensure to brush or rinse your mouth after.
  4. Avoid frequent snacking : Bulimia & Anorexia are serious eating disorders. People with eating disorders tend to eat quite very often. This poses serious threat to the health of your teeth since bacteria can easily accumulate. Acids tend to attack the teeth enamel constantly, resulting to tooth decay over time. If you suspect that you are suffering from eating disorder, you shouldn’t hesitate to talk to your dentist for treatments.
  5. Visit your dentist regularly : your dentist can fix a schedule when you’ll be coming for oral check-ups. You will also enjoy the benefits of getting regular professional oral cleaning and examinations. Regular oral cleaning from your dentist can help to prevent tooth decay and other dental problems. Your dentist can also spot any dental problem on time, early detection might be important for faster treatments.
  6. Eat tooth-healthy foods : you should take foods that supplies essential nutrients and minerals required for healthy teeth and gums. For example, deficiency in vitamins are common cause of tooth decay and gums recession.  If you don’t know the right foods that are healthy for your teeth, you can contact your dentist for recommendations. You should avoid taking much of acidic foods and drinks. Much of acidic foods or drinks results to the erosion of the teeth enamel.
  7. Frequent mouth rinse : there are numerous mouthwash available in the market today. Mouthwash contains strong antibacterial and other benefitial properties that helps in the general maintenance of the mouth. Practicing mouth rinse daily can help to prevent tooth decay and many other oral problems. If you feel that you are at risk of developing cavities, you should consider making use of flouride mouth rinses. Regular use of mouthwash eliminates harmful bacteria, removes plaque and also fights infections.
  8. Use dental sealants : according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) it’s recommended that all school-age children should use dental sealants. The dental sealant is a protective plastic coating that is applied to the surface of teeth, especially the back teeth. This sealant covers and protects the teeth against plaque and bacteria buildups. It lasts for a long period of time before there will be need for replacement. However, dental sealants needs to be checked regularly to ensure that it’s in good shape.
  9. Drink fluoridated water : recently, the idea of adding fluoride into public water supply is coming to life. Tap water is a good source of fluoride, it shows a significant protection against tooth decay and cavities. When you don’t get enough flouride from the water you drink or any other sources, your dentist can recommend flouride treatments for you. Apart from fluoridated water, there are also other protective fluoridated products that you can apply, if you are at high risk of developing cavities.
  10. Fight dry mouth : dry mouth can be caused by certain medicines, treatment or medical conditions. People that suffer from dry mouth are at risk of developing tooth decay. Always stay hydrated, if you are sick ensure that you take suitable fluids that will keep you hydrated. You should not hesitate to see a physician if you have persistent dry mouth, it can be as a sign of a serious health issue.
  11. Brush the right way : brushing daily is a good way to prevent tooth decay and numerous oral problems, only when it’s done the right way. You might be causing problems to your teeth all in the name of brushing your teeth. It’s advisable that you use soft-bristled toothbrush for brushing. Aggressive brushing and use of hard-bristled toothbrush tend to wear away the teeth enamel. You should brush more often and shouldn’t be limited to brushing only twice a day. Brushing after meal is effective in preventing the formation of plaque that causes cavities.
Finally, maybe the information here is a bit much to comprehend everything at once. You can take your time to scan through this article once more. Just know that dental cavity is  a result of tooth decay and could be a sign of poor oral hygiene. If tooth decay is left untreated, it grows bigger into the deeper layers of your tooth. This can lead to a severe toothache, infection and tooth loss. Regular visits to your dentist, good brushing and flossing habits are very effective in preventing cavities and tooth decay. If you have any questions or suggestions please let me know by using the comments box below.
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