Close Up Of Filled Cavity

How to Prevent Cavities: What You Should Know

Team General Dentistry, Oral Health

Cavities are an extremely common dental problem that many children and adults experience at some point in their lives. The treatment for minor cavities is typically a composite filling. Fortunately, there are ways that you can reduce your risk of developing cavities. Here are some of the strategies you can use to prevent cavities.

Brush Teeth After Eating or Drinking

Ideally, you should brush your teeth each time you eat or drink something. This means that you’ll need to take your toothbrush and toothpaste with you to work or school to clean your teeth after eating lunch. This can significantly impact the amount of bacteria and plaque that accumulates on your teeth, which can reduce your risk of dental decay and cavities.

Schedule Regular Dental Exams and Cleanings

No matter how diligent you are with your oral hygiene routines, it is still important to schedule regular dental exams and cleanings with your dentist. Regular cleanings can help your at-home efforts by providing your teeth with a deep clean. Having regular dental exams completed by the same dentist can be an effective way of monitoring your oral health over time.

Avoid Certain Foods

Certain foods, such as those with high amounts of acid and sugary beverages, can make your teeth more susceptible to cavities. Sports drinks and sodas can impact the environment in your mouth, with chemicals, such as phosphoric acid, that can prematurely wear down your teeth. Avoiding these foods can help to reduce your risk of developing cavities.

Opt for a Dental Sealant

Dental sealants are thin coatings that, when applied directly to the outside of your teeth, can protect your teeth against cavities. One application of a dental sealant can last for several years. The protective coating is between bacteria, food particles, and acidic beverages and your teeth.

Maintain a Healthy Diet

Maintaining a healthy diet is important for your overall health, including the likelihood that you’ll develop cavities. Eating raw vegetables, such as celery and apples, can physically remove tartar from your teeth on hard surfaces that you bite into. Healthy dairy products like yogurt and cheese, have nutrients, such as calcium, phosphates, and Vitamin D, that can keep teeth healthy. 

Fluoride Treatments

Fluoride has long been known for its ability to help prevent cavities. This is why it is important to choose a toothpaste that has fluoride in it. Some research suggests that it prevents the enzymes that break down a tooth or that it restores minerals found in tooth enamel. Because of how effective fluoride is at helping to protect teeth, it can be seen as an additive to city water systems as a public health measure to protect teeth.

McDonald Family Dentistry sees patients of all ages from the first appointment all the way through to adulthood. With flexible hours and evening appointments, it’s easy to make dental care fit into your schedule. Call to make your baby’s first dentist appointment today: 408-779-9335 or request an appointment.