Looking after your teeth and combating cavities

Looking after your teeth and combating cavities

We all know how important it is to take proper care of our teeth. The loss of a permanent tooth could wind up being an expensive problem to solve, so it’s best to do all we can to preserve the health of our natural teeth while we still have them. A large part of this preservation is preventing and combating decaying teeth, which if left unattended can lead to painful and potentially expensive cavities.

What is a cavity and how does it form?

Cavities are small holes in your teeth, usually caused by tooth decay. This decay is caused by carbohydrate-based foods such as bread, soft drinks, fruit, and lollies staying on your teeth and reacting with the bacteria in your mouth, turning them into acids. The acid, bacteria, food debris, and saliva in your mouth come together to form plaque, which clings to your teeth and dissolves the enamel, creating holes in your teeth.

When a cavity first begins to form, it’s very possible that you won’t feel a thing, as there are no nerves in your tooth’s enamel. As the decay progresses and reaches past the enamel to the softer tissues inside of your teeth, where the dentin and nerves are, you may begin to feel the cavity at work. The most common sign is sensitive teeth and pain when eating sweets, or food that is particularly hot or cold.

How do I avoid cavities?

When it comes to maintaining healthy teeth, nothing could be more important than taking care to brush regularly and thoroughly – twice a day. For a deep clean, you should also make sure to floss and rinse with mouthwash daily. Mouthwash that contains fluoride and antiseptic ingredients to kill bacteria are recommended.

Also, your diet plays a large part in your oral hygiene. As mentioned above, carbohydrates can increase the acid levels in your mouth which in turn can lead to cavities, so try to cut down on these foods and rinse your mouth with water when you do consume them.

Avoid cavities by visiting your dentist

Regular check-ups and cleans can help spot signs of decay early on, giving you time to remedy the situation before a cavity is formed. Your dentist may also be able to offer you additional help, such as fluoride supplements to strengthen your teeth or dental sealants to protect your back teeth from decay.

If it’s time for you to visit the dentist, don’t hesitate to give us a call today or get in touch here.