Greeting Red Bank, NJ! Welcome back to the ongoing dental health blog from the office of Denise DiBona, DDS. Do you know how to stop the spread of tooth decay?
Here at our office we painlessly fill a lot of cavities. Cavities are the most common form of tooth decay, and are no reason to panic. But preventing cavities can be even easier than filling them. For that reason, we want to share some information that can help you prevent tooth decay and cavities.
There are numerous ways to help stop the spread of tooth decay. You can make some changes to your diet, ensure you’re brushing and flossing correctly, and educate yourself about tooth decay.
Understanding How Tooth Decay Happens
Tooth decay and cavities are caused by the build-up of plaque and bacteria on your teeth. Whenever you eat or drink, microscopic particles of the foods and beverages remain on your teeth long after you finish your meal.
These particles of foods then attract bacteria; sugar particles are particularly adept at gathering bacteria. This bacteria eventually turns into an acidic film of plaque. Plaque eats away at the enamel of your teeth, causing cavities and leaving the vulnerable center of your teeth exposed. If left untreated tooth decay can eventually kill teeth and necessitate their removal.
Add Some Fiber to Your Diet
High fiber foods can help protect you from tooth decay and cavities. Fiber stimulates your mouth’s natural protection of saliva. Saliva helps wash away particles of food from your teeth, as well as neutralize the acidic effect of plaque and bacteria.
There are several easy ways to add fiber to your diet. Many vegetables in the produce aisle can make a tasty and decay-preventing addition to your salad. Carrots, spinach, and kale all are high in fiber; and if you’re feeling exoctic, you can even add some fruit, such as apples and pears to your salad.
Whole-grain bread and pasta are another easy way to increase your fiber intake. These foods have added decay-prevention effects as well, because they are generally used as a replacement for products made with white flour. Starchy foods made from white flour breakdown into simple sugar as you chew; sugar attracts bacteria which causes decay.
Adjust Your Brushing and Flossing Routine
When you brush, you need to make sure you’re brushing for at least two to three minutes at a time. Most people don’t simply don’t spend enough time brushing, and simply rush through the act after a shower or before bed.
Toothpaste contains all sorts of ingredients to strengthen your enamel, such as fluoride. But for these ingredients to take maximum effect, they need to time to work and sink into your enamel. There are numerous ways to make sure you’re brushing long enough; you can use the stopwatch function on your cell phone, listen to music and brush for the duration of a sing, or buy a toothbrush with a built-in timer.
You should also ensure that you are flossing before you go to bed. According to a recent university study, lying about flossing is one of the most common white lies adults tell. Many of our patients tell us they floss when they remember to, but don’t floss everyday.
Flossing is necessary to reach a large portion of the surface area of teeth. Bacteria and plaque often build up in-between your teeth, leaving them ripe for decay. If you find flossing difficult or uncomfortable, you should consider purchasing a floss pick or water pick. If your gums bleed from flossing, you should also consider having a Dental Exam in order to be screened for Gum Disease.
What To Do If You Have a Cavity
If you already have a cavity, or think you may have a cavity, don’t panic. We can quickly and painlessly fill it at our office in Red Bank, NJ. If you’re are experiencing a toothache, or sensitivity to hot or cold beverages, you may have a cavity.
We offer painless Air Abrasion technology to remove decay from minor cavities. This is a safe and effective process which uses compressed air instead of a drill.
We also offer tooth-colored and anagram fillings at our office. Tooth-colored fillings are carefully selected to match the shade of your natural teeth, and carefully sculpted to match the natural surface of your teeth’s pits and ridges.
If you think you may have a cavity, we encourage you to contact our office. Click here to make an appointment at the office of Denise DiBona, DDS, in Red Bank, NJ.