Cavity Prevention Tips and Ideas

The second most common disease in America is tooth decay, second only to the common cold. As sugars build up on plaque formed on teeth, it creates acidic bacteria that eats away at our teeth causing tooth decay. Understanding this simple fact is critical to ones oral health care and preventing problems, and that is what we are all about here at Rigby Advanced Dental in Bee Cave, TX.

Proper hygiene habits are where you want to begin when it comes to preventing cavities. It is important to include brushing, flossing and mouthwash in your daily routine. Brushing is important to do after every meal, preventing excess food from collecting on your teeth and forming into something damaging. Brushing at night and in the morning is also a healthy routine for keeping bacteria out of your mouth. Replacing your toothbrush, which can be in itself a home for bacteria, regularly makes the effects of brushing more efficient.

Flossing and mouthwash are also very important to proper oral hygiene. Though flossing is an often despised activity, it is much like exercise. Over time, flossing becomes less of a painful, daunting experience and turns into something far more bearable and necessary. By cleaning in between teeth with floss, you are able to scrape off particles that the brush’s bristles are unable to reach and also remove substances that mouthwash is unable to dislodge. Flossing at least twice a day can help in keeping bacteria out of the mouth.

Mouthwash is something that can be done once or twice a day. The ingredients in most mouthwash products are designed to kill bacteria can help fight plaque. Combined with proper brushing and flossing habits, mouthwash can be the knockout punch against bacteria.

While bacteria is the primary reason for tooth decay, sugars are the primary catalyst for the bacteria. Sugars and starches are sticky substances that can adhere to the surfaces of teeth more easily than other ingested nutrients. Our diet often contains more sugars than is necessary, causing a dramatic increase in plaque. Sugarless gum can combat this plaque in a seemingly unorthodox way.
Sugarless gum is helpful because it not only can satisfy a sweet tooth without ingesting more harmful sugars, but it produces more saliva in the mouth. Though sugarless gum by itself is relatively useless, the gum causes glands in the mouth to produce saliva, which can further help in defeating and preventing plaque.

Saliva is the mouth’s natural defense against bacteria and helps in breaking down food for digestion. Though saliva is generally used to help with the breaking down of food in the mouth, in the case of sugarless gum, saliva is produced with nothing to break down but plaque and other bacteria and particles left in the mouth.

The sugarless gum acts as a catalyst for activating the mouth’s natural defenses, much like medicine for the flu helps the body fight sickness. Though it is an effective tip for preventing cavities, sugarless gum should not replace daily brushing, flossing and mouthwash habits.

Sugars are the number one cause for cavities. The substance of most sugars allows them to adhere to teeth and more easily form bacteria and eventually plaque and tartar. Candy and soft drinks are the most obvious culprits of tooth decay, as they contain large amounts of sticky sugars. It is best to avoid candies and soft drinks whenever possible.
Eating and drinking healthy is just as important to your mouth as it is the rest of your body. When eating healthy and having your body in balance, it is far easier for your mouth to stay healthy. Eating all natural oats and granola is a great strategy for snacking healthy. Avoiding candy as a snack is very important.

While fruits are generally very good for you, some fruits with high amounts of sugar or citric acid can cause tooth decay when ingested regularly. While it is generally not enough to cause problems, it is important to note that many fruits due contain some levels of sugar and should be limited, but definitely eaten for a proper and healthy diet.

Apples are the best food for teeth as their skin has floss-like effects on the teeth and apples contain virtually no sugars. Apples are the perfect food for a sweet tooth, containing nothing that could be potentially harmful to the teeth, while also acting as a naturally abrasive tool. Apples, combined with the aforementioned sugarless gum, are effective tools for cavity prevention, but as with sugarless gum, apples do not replace daily flossing, brushing or mouthwash habits.

A dental sealant is designed to protect teeth from natural weaknesses in the design of the back teeth. By adhering a plastic resin to the chewing surface of the molars, dental sealant can help prevent cavities far more effectively when combined with conventional cleaning methods.

Grooves in the back teeth collect plaque easily due to the depth of the grooves. These same grooves are difficult to clean properly due to the depth, even with proper brushing and mouthwash habits. These grooves also have relatively thin layers of enamel, the natural shield of the tooth, which makes it easier for tooth decaying bacteria to break through the enamel surface and eat away at the tooth. Dental sealant, which fills and encases these grooves, provides an effective solution.

By using dental sealant, several solutions are provided to the teeth. First, the teeth now have a fortified protection against bacterial buildup and tooth decay. Secondly, the sealant makes the grooves easier to reach and clean properly, allowing for more efficient cleaning and better oral hygiene. The second defense helps reinforce the enamel in the grooves, providing a second line of defense that is far easier to clean.

We enjoy being able to provide the best dentistry possible to the people of Bee Cave, Lakeway and other surrounding Lake Travis areas!  If you have any questions, feel free to call and schedule and appointment today (512) 992-2822.  Rigby Advanced Dental is here to take care of all your dental needs.  We are locate in The Offices at the Hill Country Galleria

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