Cavity Haverhill | Tooth decay is an issue that can affect you at any age. While children are more prone to decay, adults can be affected as well. In other words, cavities are inevitable. The more you know about maintaining healthier teeth, the more likely you are to prevent tooth decay. Let’s take a look at what cavities are and how to prevent them.
What is a Cavity?
In brief, a tooth cavity occurs when your tooth enamel—the tough, protective, outer layer of your teeth—breaks down over time and tiny holes form on the surface of your teeth. Plaque, a sticky film that builds up on your teeth, is the main culprit that causes enamel to weaken. This allows cavities to form, which your dentist will recommend a dental filling to restore the tooth. Left untreated, the decay will worsen and infection is likely to occur. Luckily, there are many ways to disrupt the process of a tooth cavity and prevent plaque from accumulating on your teeth.
It’s common knowledge that eating too many sweets and drinking sugary beverages contributes to tooth decay. Sugar acts like a magnet for harmful bacteria that thrives in our mouths. This bacteria feeds on the sugar that gets stuck to our teeth and creates plaque.
One way to protect your teeth is to limit your consumption of sweet treats and instead choose healthy, low-sugar snacks like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Also, opt for unsweetened beverages like water, seltzer, and herbal tea. Limit acidic foods, such as citrus fruits, because the acid weakens tooth enamel.
If you do eat sugary foods or acidic, sweetened beverages, have them with your meals, instead of between them. Using a straw when drinking sugary and acidic beverages is another helpful strategy. And, if you have children, prevent them from going to bed with a bottle or a sippy cup containing milk or juice. The sugars in those beverages will sit on your child’s teeth all night long. This increases the chance of tooth decay.
Brush your teeth at least twice a day to prevent cavities. Spend at least 2 minutes gently brushing your teeth. Be sure to use a toothpaste that contains fluoride because fluoride strengthens teeth. In addition to brushing, get in the habit of flossing your teeth once a day to remove plaque.
Ask Your Dentist.
Visiting your dentist every six months for professional cleanings prevents cavities. He or she has the tools and expertise to thoroughly remove plaque and tartar. In addition, your dentist will also be able to detect early signs of tooth decay.
Cavity Haverhill | Following these simple cavity prevention tips will help you avoid tooth cavities and maintain a healthy, confident, and beautiful smile. Has it been a while since your last dental exam? Contact us today! We offer a variety of dental solutions to maintain your smile. Call 978-373-1231 or book an appointment online.