Your Guide on How to Prevent Tooth Decay

Your Guide on How to Prevent Tooth Decay
Posted on 05/31/2018
Many people don’t pay as much attention to their dental health as they do their physical health and well-being. If you’re one of them, you should know that overlooking the health of your teeth can lead to painful tooth decay and a mouthful of unhealthy and unattractive teeth.

To help you keep your teeth healthy and beautiful for a lifetime of great smiles, the team at your local Kalamazoo, MI general dentistry office has put together this tooth decay prevention guide. But before we get into the details, we’re going to cover tooth decay, including what it is and what causes it, so you know what you’re up against!

Tooth Decay is Out to Destroy Your Teeth!

Tooth decay is the destruction of the hard, outer layer of your teeth called enamel. Plaque, which is a sticky film of bacteria, constantly forms on your teeth. When you eat foods containing sugar, the bacteria in plaque produces acids that attack the enamel. Because plaque is sticky, it keeps these acids in contact with your teeth which, with time, leads to a breakdown of the enamel to cause cavities or holes in the teeth.

Now that you know what tooth decay is and what causes it, we’ll give you some helpful tooth decay prevention tips!

Watch What You Eat

Sugary foods and drinks can cause bacteria to build up in your mouth to destroy the protective enamel on your teeth, and ultimately, raise your risk of decay. That’s why you should be mindful of what you put into your mouth! Try to limit your consumption of sugary foods and snacks like cookies, cakes, candy, and ice cream. Because the good bacteria in your saliva works to repair damaged enamel, you should also limit between-meal snacking.

Brush after Every Meal and Before Bedtime´┐╝

After every meal, you should take the time to brush your teeth thoroughly using a soft-bristled toothbrush. Be gentle when brushing so you don’t weaken the enamel on your teeth. Before you head off to bed at night, get that toothbrush out once again and give your teeth a good cleaning to make sure they’re clean overnight.

Floss Every Single Day

There’s a reason why your Kalamazoo dentist tells you to floss your teeth every day! Flossing helps remove plaque and bits of food your toothbrush misses. We recommend flossing before bedtime to ensure your teeth are clean overnight. If you need some flossing tips, be sure to ask as we’re always here to help!

Make Sure You’re Getting Enough Fluoride

Fluoride is a common ingredient in toothpaste and mouthwash that helps guard against tooth decay. Fluoride is also found in most public water supplies. Fluoride works to protect your teeth by strengthening and reinforcing the enamel on your teeth. Instead of drinking bottled water, drink water right out of the tap and make sure you use fluoridated toothpaste. You can also rinse your mouth out once per day using a mouthwash containing fluoride.

Visit Your Kalamazoo Dentist Twice a Year

On top of eating well, practicing good oral hygiene, and getting enough fluoride, you should be visiting Dr. Hanna and her team twice a year so we can examine your teeth and give them a professional cleaning. When we clean your teeth, we’ll make sure that we remove all that harmful plaque and stubborn tartar from the surfaces of your teeth and in all those tight crevices between your teeth and along the gum line!

As you can see, it’s not hard to prevent tooth decay! If it’s time for a checkup and professional cleaning, give us a call at (269) 349-3203 or use this online form to set up an appointment! We look forward to seeing you soon!