How to Prevent Cavities between Professional Teeth Cleanings
When teeth are regularly exposed to sugary and starchy foods, the enamel on the tooth loses minerals, causing tooth decay. If caught early, this decay can be stopped or reversed, but if it continues, the enamel will eventually be destroyed, resulting in a cavity. A cavity is a permanent condition that a dentist will need to repair with a dental filling. As your family dentist in Calgary will advise, cavity prevention is essential to maintaining good oral health.
Cavity Prevention Involves a Regular Visit to Your Family Dentist
Don’t wait to experience pain and discomfort to discover you have a cavity. By visiting your Calgary dentist regularly, you can ensure that any damaged teeth, especially cavities can be taken care of in a timely manner.
The following tips will help you keep your teeth looking and performing their best between cleanings:
- Use Fluoride: Fluoride is a mineral that prevents tooth decay, or can stop and reverse early tooth decay. You can get fluoride from community water supplies, the majority of which contain fluorinated water, and by brushing with fluoride toothpaste.
- Brush Regularly: Brushing after every meal and after sugary snacks is important in order to eliminate food residue and build up fluoride levels that help teeth repair themselves.
- Limit Late Night Drinks and Snacks: Because your saliva flow decreases during sleep, your teeth are less able to repair themselves from late night acid attacks caused by sugary foods and drinks.
- Get Regular Cleanings: You should get your teeth examined and cleaned by a dentist at least twice a year to remove plaque build-up, check for early signs of tooth decay, apply fluoride varnishes, if necessary, and treat any issues that have arisen since your last cleaning. There are countless benefits to having regular teeth cleanings, so make sure you book yours and mark them on your calendar.
Managing Children and Cavities
With little ones, it’s especially important to develop good oral hygiene habits at a young age. If you have children, the following tips will both help establish these lifelong habits at a young age and cut down on the number of cavities you’ll see at each check-up:
- Limit between Meal Snacking: Not only are you exposing the teeth to fewer acid attacks, but you are minimizing how much build up is accumulating on the teeth and around the gum line between brushing.
- Supervise Brushing: Make sure that you are watching young children brush their teeth and helping them reach all parts of their mouth. Dentists caution that children under the age of 7 are not able to successfully brush their own teeth alone and need supervision. Some suggest brushing your children’s teeth and then letting them finish, so that you can be sure they are clean, and they can feel a sense of accomplishment and independence.
- Limit Sweets: Candy, cookies, soda, and other sugary foods and drinks should be kept as a treat or for special occasions for a number of health reasons, including your oral health.
- Re-Brush after Bedtime Drinks and Snacks: After children have brushed their teeth for bed, prevent them from eating or drinking anything with sugar, or insist that they re-brush their teeth.
- Get Regular Cleanings: A family dentist or pediatric dentist can gently but effectively manage regular teeth cleanings and dental check-ups to ensure that your children have healthy teeth and gums and address any issues that may arise.
Looking for a Calgary dentist? Call Go Dental at 403-407-2028 to learn more about cavity prevention or to schedule an appointment with a general dentist in Calgary. We welcome new patients—please fill out this new patient form prior to your appointment. You can also book your appointment online for a consultation at our family dental clinic.