How to Be Cavity Free Next Time You See Your Dentist

If you think that you have healthy teeth, there are several strategies you can take to try and be sure. Cavities don’t just suddenly show up: they begin with a healthy tooth. The bacteria on your teeth, called plaque, digest sugar and produce acid. The acid from the bacteria or from carbonated drinks can dissolve the tooth and leave a hole in it.

How do we avoid tooth decay?

Here are some things to avoid (or do in moderation) and a few points to remember to have cavity-free teeth the next time you visit your dentist.

Eat or drink these sweets only in moderation, which means less than every day:

1. soda/pop
2. sugary drinks
3. coffee drinks with added syrups or mocha
4. sports drinks
5. chewing gum
6. breath mints & fresheners
7. cough drops
8. hard candy
9. sticky candy
10. Tums or other chewable antacids
11. chewable vitamin C
12. chewable aspirin

Additional Things to Remember:

1. Sugar and cavities go along together. Soda pop, gum, mints, cough drops, hard candy, and sticky candy can cause you severe cavities not only because they’re sweet but also because the sugar stays on your teeth for a long time.
2. Soda/pop is bad for your teeth too! Most of us love sodas, but soda is loaded with sugar and is extremely acidic. It can even dissolve your tooth enamel. Carbonated drinks aren’t just bad for your teeth; they’re also bad for your overall health.
3. Take time to brush and floss. Cavities happen when bacteria make acid that destroy your teeth. But if you brush and floss more often, you will have less bacteria on your teeth to make these harmful acids. Brush at least twice a day; even better, brush three or even four times a day. Floss once a day to get rid of bacteria on and between your teeth.
4. Use fluoride. You can prevent cavities by using fluoride. If you have severe tooth decay, use an extra supplement of fluoride.
5. People with dry mouth are prone to cavities. Saliva can fight against cavity-causing bacteria in the mouth. People with Xerostomia, or dryness of the mouth, are more likely to get cavities. To prevent getting dry mouth, drink sips of water throughout the day and avoid sodas, candies, and other sweet, carbonated drinks.

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