Every time you sit down in your dentist’s chair for a cleaning, one thought is sure to cross your mind: I hope I don’t have any cavities! We all know that eating a lot of candy and not brushing will help cavities form in our teeth, but how exactly does a cavity form? What can we do to prevent them? We’ve put together a quick guide that we hope will be useful!
What is a cavity?
– A cavity is a hole in the tooth that happens as the result of tooth decay.
How does a cavity form?
– Cavities begin to form when the bacteria in your mouth breaks down food particles and produces acid. This acid combines with the food particles to create plaque. If plaque is allowed to remain on the tooth surface, the erosion caused by the acid will eventually create a cavity.
How can I prevent cavities?
– The best way to prevent a cavity is to brush and floss regularly. Preventing the buildup of plaque is key. It is also important to limit your intake of sugary, carbohydrate-filled foods, as they tend to remain on the surface of the teeth and encourage plaque formation. Also keep up with your teeth cleanings twice a year!
Quick Cavity Facts:
1. Three factors are necessary for cavities to occur: susceptible teeth, acid producing bacteria and a diet rich in sugars and refined carbohydrates.
2. Fluoride incorporated into the tooth structure protects teeth against decay by making the enamel more resistant to acid attack.
3. Restricting sugar intake is important in preventing cavities: your total sugar intake should be less than 50 grams a day (about ten teaspoons) including sugars in other foods. Try using stevia in your coffee instead of sugar- each sugary sip adds up!
Cavities take time to form, so the good news is that by changing a few of your behaviors, and forming healthier habits, you can easily prevent them! Eating healthier, brushing regularly, and using toothpaste with fluoride in it are all good habits to form.
If you are in need of a cleaning, we’ve got you covered here at Smile Haven Dental Center. Call us at 860-584-2051 to schedule an appointment today!