Tooth decay can become a problem for adults later in life if they are not taking care of their teeth in their earlier years. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, 26 percent of adults ranging from 20 to 64 have untreated decay in their teeth, making tooth decay the most common disease in the world. Let’s help lower those numbers by educating ourselves and following these simple steps to prevent tooth decay.
The first step to preventing tooth decay is to understand how it starts. When eating foods high in sugar – like candy bars – or drinking carbonated beverages that are also high in sugar and starches – like soda – these ingredients work to break down the enamel on a person’s teeth, which is the protective coating that helps to prevent tooth decay. Once the enamel is gone, it’s gone for good so make sure to prevent tooth enamel loss with a few extra tips.
Another way to help combat the dangers of tooth decay is to go to the dentist and ask about sealing your teeth. Sealants are a thin protective coating that dentists put over the teeth to prevent bits of food and other items to get stuck in a tooth’s small grooves that can later on help contribute to tooth decay.
One of the most important things you can do is brush your teeth regularly and correctly. That is the first and foremost way to prevent against cavities, tooth decay and other unwanted germs in your mouth. The best way to brush your teeth, according to the toothpaste company Colgate, is, “brushing twice a day for at least two minutes” which can help to remove food particles and plaque and clean your mouth out. Colgate also recommends flossing among other techniques to have better overall mouth care.
One of the lesser known, but no less important tactics, is to use fluoride to brush your teeth. This is because fluoride is a mineral that can prevent tooth decay and even reverse it in many cases. While it is already available in your water and there are toothpastes and mouthwashes with fluoride in them, it’s still a good idea to get a fluoride treatment at the dentist every other six months to ensure your enamel gets an extra boost of strength.
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The last but possibly the hardest step to follow is to avoid certain foods and drinks that are high in sugars, starches and acids. For example, one bottle of Coca-Cola, not only has 240calories in a bottle but contains 64 grams of sugar, not to mention high fructose corn syrup and phosphoric acid. Fortunately, there are some alternative ways to have a healthy smile without giving up the foods you love, but preserving the enamel is still of the utmost importance.
Following these steps are just some of the ways to help combat tooth decay and have a healthy mouth. For more information, contact Royal Oak cosmetic and general dentist Dr. Larry Duffield of Duffield Dentistry at 877-630-7410 to schedule an appointment and prevent tooth decay, today!
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