Nearly all of us develop tooth decay at some point in our lives. Common warning signs may include uncomfortable toothaches or tooth sensitivity. If the doctor diagnoses you with decay then you will need a filling or crown to repair your tooth. But can you take steps to potentially avoid tooth decay altogether? Let’s look at ways to help prevent tooth decay from developing.
Preventing Tooth Decay
- Avoid Sugary Snacks: Foods high in sugar and other starches, such as candy, chocolate, and chips, can leave behind sugar particles that bacteria break down. Breaking down these particles increases oral acidity and coats the teeth in a biofilm known as plaque, weakening the outer tooth enamel. Instead, trying enjoying nuts, fruits, vegetables, and dairy products as a snack.
- Drink More Water: Drinking water can hydrate you and poses no risk to your oral health. However, other drinks can actually increase the risk of cavities, such as soda, sweet tea, energy drinks, sports drinks, and even some fruit juices.
- Brush Properly: You should brush your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes per session. You need to reach every available surface of your teeth with the bristles. Doing so can help remove plaque buildup and reduce the severity of tartar buildup.
- Floss Daily: When food particles remain trapped between teeth the risk of tooth decay increases. Your toothbrush’s bristles simply can’t reach between the teeth. However, flossing every evening before going to bed can remove these particles and reduce the risk of cavities and periodontal disease.
- Have Your Teeth Cleaned: A professional dental cleaning is the only way to completely remove tartar buildup from your teeth. Otherwise, this buildup can weaken your smile’s defenses against harmful bacteria and allow a cavity to form. You should have your teeth cleaned twice a year, once every six months.