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Posted on: September 14, 2021
Cavity Prevention Advice for Everyone
Busy schedules can make it difficult for you to make time for regular dental hygiene like brushing and flossing. These tasks, however, are absolutely essential to help you keep your teeth healthy and to prevent cavities. Taking the time to brush your teeth at least twice each day and flossing daily will help you to prevent tooth decay and cavities from affecting the beauty of your smile in College Park.
What Is a Cavity?
A cavity is a hole in the tooth enamel that allows bacteria to reach the interior of the tooth. This hole must be cleaned and filled with a safe and inert material to prevent the hole from growing larger and causing further deterioration of the tooth. If not treated promptly, even a small hole in your tooth can develop into a serious infection, which could require a root canal treatment to resolve.
What Causes Tooth Decay?
Tooth decay is usually caused by plaque, which is formed when the bacteria that normally live in your mouth consume the food particles left over when you eat or drink. This whitish or clear substance is very sticky and acidic, which allows it to attack the tooth enamel. If not removed promptly by brushing and flossing, this plaque will gradually wear away the enamel that protects the interior of your tooth to produce cavities and tooth decay.
Treatments for Cavities
Most cavities can be treated easily and effectively with a simple filling. This is usually accomplished during a single visit to your dentist. First, the infected or damaged material will be removed from your tooth under local anesthetic. Your dentist will then place filling material into your tooth to completely fill the gap left behind by tooth decay. Finally, your tooth will be smoothed and shaped to ensure that it feels natural and looks natural.
More serious cases of tooth decay could make it necessary to remove most of the interior pulp of the tooth. This usually requires a crown to provide structural support for the damaged and fragile remainder of the tooth.
If infection gets to the roots or interior of your tooth, you may also require root canal procedures or an extraction of the damaged tooth to ensure better dental health for you or other members of your family. Root canals require the removal of all materials, including the nerve endings, from the interior of the tooth. This eliminates nearly all the pain associated with gum infections and tooth decay.
Fortunately, there are some proven ways to prevent cavities before they start. Many of these suggestions are likely to be familiar to you, especially if you received regular dental care as a child. Here are some of the most practical strategies for preventing cavities and keeping your teeth healthy now and in the future.
Brush Your Teeth
Brushing twice daily or, preferably, after every meal, can remove most of the plaque that could otherwise attack your tooth enamel. Be sure to brush for two minutes at a time, paying attention to the fronts and the backs of teeth as well as the chewing and biting surfaces.
Floss at Least Once Daily
Flossing is the perfect way to remove plaque and food particles that can otherwise accumulate between teeth. Flossing your teeth at least once a day and more often if time permits will help to keep your teeth as clean and healthy as possible.
Take Time for Teeth Cleaning
Regular teeth cleaning visits at your dentist’s office can remove hard-to-reach plaque and tartar from your teeth. Tartar is formed when plaque hardens in place. Cleaning procedures performed by a professional dentist are a great way to remove this material and to leave your teeth cleaner and fresher every day.
Ask About Dental Sealants
During your visit to the dentist’s office, be sure to ask about dental sealants. These applications can seal off gaps and areas between teeth to prevent food particles and bacteria from collecting in these spots. Dental sealants are a practical way to protect your teeth from cavities and tooth decay. They last for years and are effective in reducing the number of cavities you experience.
Rinse Your Mouth
Using mouthwash to rinse away food particles and bacterial buildup can reduce their effects on your tooth enamel. If mouthwash is not available, simply rinsing with cool water can provide added help in removing these materials from your mouth and protecting against tooth decay. This can also be helpful if you cannot brush after each meal.
Improve Your Diet
Upgrading your daily diet to include foods that strengthen your teeth will help you to prevent cavities and tooth decay. Cheese and dairy products are among the best known, tooth-friendly foods. Fresh fruits and veggies are also helpful in maintaining the health of your teeth and gums to promote the brightest smiles for you and your family.
Make Time for Dental Hygiene
Setting aside time to brush, floss, and visit your dentist’s office is perhaps the most important way to protect your teeth from the negative effects of plaque and bacteria. By working to fit these activities into your busy schedule, you can protect your dental health to enjoy stronger teeth and brighter smiles.
Build a Relationship With Your Dentist
Establishing a good working relationship with an affordable dentist in College Park is a great way to protect your teeth and to maintain your smile. This can help you to make the most positive impressions on those with whom you come in contact. Your dentist is a natural partner in protecting the health of your teeth and gums with regular dental exams, teeth cleaning appointments and guidance on home dental hygiene habits.
By creating a solid working relationship with your local dentist, you can enjoy brighter smiles for many years to come.