What exactly is the most common dental disease known to man? Cavities! As a responsible person, you most likely have not deliberately set out to get cavities in your teeth. You may not even be aware of several habits that contribute to this type of tooth decay. The following is a guide to a few sneaky ways that bacteria invades your tooth enamel.
Discover the Real Reason Soda Harms Teeth
Most people understand that drinking sugary drinks does not lead to good dental health. Sometimes, you cannot resist the urge for a cold, cola beverage. If you drink soda pop, remember to brush your teeth as soon as you can after finishing your drink. Sticky, sweet substances cling to your dental enamel and only let go reluctantly after you thoroughly clean your mouth.
Do not forget to floss, otherwise harmful bacteria lurk between your teeth, waiting for their opportunity to attack your tooth’s surface. While sugary drinks bring their own set of problems, that is not the entire reason soda pop harms your teeth. Carbonation is the culprit and source of many problems that soda pop brings into your mouth. When you consume carbonated beverages, it increases the acidity of your saliva. Carbonation erodes your tooth’s surface and breaks down the protective enamel.
Mind Your Fruit and Vegetable Consumption
According to the American Dental Association, acidic drinks and food harm your teeth. This includes healthy foods most people try to consume for a better diet. Fruits high in citrus, such as oranges and lemons, can harm your teeth. Vegetables including tomatoes have a high acid content. Eating them as part of a meal will reduce any direct contact they have with your tooth enamel.
Eat your fruits and vegetables, however, try to include them with other meal ingredients. Cheese and leafy greens help reduce your mouths acidity level and can be good choices to include when you need to counteract acidic fruits and vegetables. Diluting acid levels in your saliva is good for your teeth. Acid etches your teeth, leaving them vulnerable to pitting and enamel erosion. This causes cavities while you munch on oranges in the belief they do not cause harm to your health.
Keep Your Dental Appointments
Good dental hygiene habits dramatically decrease your chance of developing cavities. Brushing your teeth thoroughly with a soft bristled brush and make sure you can reach all tooth surfaces in the back of your mouth. Floss daily to remove food and beverage residue that builds up between your teeth throughout the day. No matter how well you practice your daily oral hygiene routine, they are not complete without a checkup with a dentist, like Kenneth Schweizer DDS PA, every six months.
Only your dentist or hygienist can scrape away tartar that forms below your gum line. When a dental professional thoroughly examines and cleans your teeth every six months they can head off problems that lead directly to cavities. Detecting dental problems early minimizes the damage that develops rapidly in your teeth if left unchecked. Your dentist can also identify other potential dental health problems, such as periodontal disease.
Listen to Your Mouth
Occasionally, no matter how rigorous you are in practicing good dental hygiene, factors beyond your control make your teeth prone to cavities. If you grow up drinking non-fluoridated water, you likely are at greater risk for tooth decay. Certain medications affect your chances for tooth decay. Medication that causes dry mouth means you have decreased saliva levels.
Saliva keeps your mouth healthy by washing away acids building up on your teeth. Ask your doctor about this side effect as prescription saliva enhancers are available. Some diseases or a genetic predisposition to conditions such as chalk teeth affect your oral health. Your dental professional may recommend seeing you three or four times a year when unusual factors may impact your teeth.
Talk with your dentist and discuss what additional measures might help your oral health. Your dental professional is your best ally in the war against cavities.