How to Stay Cavity-Free (And What to Do if You Get One)
Did you know that about 32% of adults aged 20 to 44 have untreated cavities?
If you brush your teeth twice a day and still feel tooth pain, you may not be doing enough to stave off cavities. Brushing is a good start, but there are many ways you can keep your mouth healthy.You can prevent cavities before they start by planning a proper teeth-cleaning routine and making mild adjustments to your lifestyle.
Here are some ways you can keep your teeth cavity free and what to do if you think you have a cavity.
How to keep teeth cavity-free.
Cavities are damaged areas in the surface of your teeth that are caused by bacteria in your mouth. Bacteria feed on the things you eat and create plaque on your teeth. Over time, this plaque can wear away at your enamel, creating soft spots and holes in your teeth. When left untreated, cavities can cause tooth pain, infection, and tooth loss. To keep yourself free of cavities, create a dental health routine that consists of the following.
Brush teeth regularly to avoid a cavity.
Brushing your teeth morning and night for two minutes with a toothpaste that contains fluoride is an important step that shouldn’t be overlooked. Brushing is the best way to remove plaque and prevent gum disease. It’s particularly important to brush before you go to sleep to prevent bacteria from creating acids that can break down your enamel overnight. If you want to go the extra mile, brush after every meal.
Use an ADA-approved mouthwash.
Using a mouthwash twice per day after you brush can further strengthen your teeth and clean your gums. ADA-approved, therapeutic mouthwash can prevent tooth decay while reducing plaque and gingivitis. If you need tooth pain relief, using a mouthwash formulated to help with sensitivity can keep your nerves from encountering painful stimuli.
Floss every day for a cavity-free mouth.
When learning how to keep teeth cavity-free, it may be easy to miss this step. Flossing once per day will clean the spaces between your teeth that your toothbrush might miss. It can also help dislodge food particles that bacteria feed off. For best results, flossing should be done after meals or before going to sleep.
Maintain a healthy diet.
Diet has everything to do with keeping your mouth healthy. If your diet is high in sugar, your oral health will likely suffer because bacteria in your mouth feed on sugars that you eat throughout the day. This can lead to decay and tooth nerve pain. Being mindful of your diet can help.
Try to incorporate healthy foods into your diet that promote healthy teeth! Foods like fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, dairy products, and sugarless gum can help strengthen your teeth and keep them clean. Sipping water regularly is also a great way to cleanse your mouth of food particles throughout the day. It’s even better if the water contains fluoride. Keeping your diet healthy and free of excess sugar can go a long way in preventing cavities.
Breathe through your nose.
Excessive mouth-breathing can actually have an impact on your oral health. When you breathe through your mouth, your gums dry out, which can lead to gum disease and tooth decay. It can also give you bad breath.
If you can, consciously make the effort to breathe through your nose throughout the day. This is one of the easiest tooth pain remedies if you regularly breathe through your mouth. If you can’t help breathing through your mouth at night, a doctor may be necessary to diagnose the problem. They can help figure out what is preventing airflow through your nasal passages and determine the best solution for you.
If you’re a smoker, you’re harming your gums, tongue, and teeth. Not only does smoking lead to severe problems like gum disease and tooth loss, it also stains your teeth, yellowing them and turning them brown over time. Additionally, smoking can dry out your mouth and prevent your saliva from protecting your mouth as well as it should.
Be familiar with your genetics.
Your likelihood of getting a cavity may partially depend on your genes. You may have inherited soft tooth enamel and a preference for sweets from your parents. If that’s the case, you will need to pay more attention to your dental health. If your family has a history of poor oral health that results in cavities, you should do everything you can to be proactive.
Visit a dentist.
Regular check-ups every six months go a long way in cavity prevention. Every six months, your dental hygienist will give your teeth a thorough cleaning and check for any soft areas or plaque buildup. They may even give you some tips on how you can better care for your teeth.
Use your trip to the dentist to ask any questions and voice any concerns you have.
What to do if you think you have a cavity.
If you’re in pain or feel a soft spot in your tooth, you might have a cavity. The best way to find out and get the problem resolved is to meet with a dentist. They can confirm whether or not you have a cavity and help you decide on a treatment option.
Keeping your mouth healthy and cavity-free.
Many adults aren’t doing enough to maintain their oral health, but being cavity free is an attainable goal that everyone should strive to reach. Give yourself the extra edge you might need in the fight against cavities by following these tips! If you need a dentist in Greenville, South Carolina, request an appointment with our team at Monroe Family Dentistry today!