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How to Prevent Tooth Decay

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Everyone has at least once experienced the painful aftermath of tooth decay. Though it’s a common experience, tooth decay can be prevented. If it happens too often, you actually risk losing your pearly whites. Tooth decay is a problem that affects both adults and children. And the methods for prevention are similar for all age groups.

What is Tooth Decay?

Tooth decay occurs when the enamel, the white and hard outer layer of teeth, is destroyed by acids produced by bacteria. A sticky layer of bacteria called plaque forms on teeth regularly. It is what you brush off each morning. The bacteria in plaque digest foods we eat, especially sugary ones. A byproduct of this process is acid that seeps through the plaque into the enamel of teeth leading to cavities.

Tooth decay and cavities can be forced by gum disease as well, where the roots of teeth are infected when gums recede. This is a condition more common in older adults. On the plus side, tooth decay is preventable. Good dental hygiene practices can normally prevent tooth decay.

How to Prevent Tooth Decay

There are several preventative measures you can take to prevent the destruction of enamel in your teeth. Here is a list:

Brush Your Teeth with Fluoride Toothpaste

The mineral fluoride is known to be capable of stopping tooth decay from getting worse. It may even be able to reverse the condition. That’s why dentists highly recommend the use of fluoridated toothpaste. It’s recommended to brush teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste to keep tooth decay at bay.

Drinking fluoridated water is also known to promote dental health. About 74 percent of community water systems in the U.S. are fortified with fluoride. However, do not take fluoride without consulting with a doctor. Excess fluoride in your body can lead to death.

Don’t Eat Sugary or Starchy Foods at Night

Sugar and starch are the favorite meals of bacteria in the mouth. When you eat sugary foods and go to bed at night without brushing teeth, oral bacteria produces more acids that may accelerate tooth decay. So avoiding consumption of excessive sugar and starch is good for your health.

Get Sealants from a Dentist

Dental sealants are thin, plastic films that are applied to the surfaces of the back teeth most likely to come into contact with food. Dental sealants prevent food and bacteria from getting stuck on the uneven surfaces of back teeth, thus reducing the risk of getting cavities. You can think of dental sealants as a form of barrier that protects the enamel of your teeth. You can obtain dental sealants from a reputed dentist in your area. Dental clinics like Vibrant Dentistry specialize in high-quality sealants. Costs may differ depending on the area you live and your age. What matters most is having dental sealants applied by a reliable dentist.

Following the above steps are important for keeping cavities at bay. Also, you should regularly visit a dentist to have your teeth checked for cavities or gum disease. A dentist will be able to spot a potential decay problem in advance and prescribe treatments.



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