Tooth Decay and Cavities
Combatting Tooth Decay and Cavities with Oral Hygiene
Tooth decay, also called caries or cavities, is caused by acid-producing bacteria that demineralize enamel. Left untreated long enough, the decay caused by eating poorly and not caring properly for your teeth can lead to severe cavities and even root canal infections!
The best way to prevent tooth decay is to pay attention to the early signs that may indicate problems, and get to your dentist as quickly as possible. For example, if you have sudden tooth sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures, localized pain in your tooth or gum line, or a tooth that changes color, you probably have a cavity.
To prevent tooth decay, develop a consistent oral hygiene routine. You can keep a healthy mouth and prevent cavities if you:
- Brush and rinse with fluoride products in the mornings and evenings
- Floss at least once a day
- Eat healthy foods and avoid sugary snacks
- Schedule visits with your dentist every six months
You can prevent tooth decay with dental sealants–a plastic-type material applied to the molars where many cavities take root. This is a great way to make sure your children are protected against decay!