How You Can Steer Clear of Cavities

Preventing Cavities Jackson MI Dentists

Cavities are never fun to deal with so why not try to prevent them altogether? It is entirely possible but it does require some daily dedication on your part. Of course, our Jackson, MI, dentists are also here to help with regularly scheduled teeth cleanings.

Here’s how you can get in front of cavities and prevent them from developing.

What Is a Cavity?

A cavity is a hole in the tooth that has been caused by tooth decay. Any individual, no matter their age, can develop cavities if proper oral hygiene habits are not practiced. For many patients, cavities occur due to a combination of foods consumed and inadequate brushing. Some patients are also genetically predisposed to cavity formation.

Despite being preventable for most, however, cavities are very common. They’re also easily treated so you can enjoy a healthy, restored smile. When one is found, our dentists will remove the decay and treat the affected area with a tooth-colored filling.

With this type of filling, no one will be able to tell you’ve had a cavity filled as the composite resin material used matches your natural tooth enamel. You can smile confidently knowing there is no risk of any metal showing at all.

Telltale Symptoms of a Cavity

Depending on where your cavity is and its size, your symptoms could vary. Sometimes cavities are small enough that they don’t produce any symptoms. These typically have to be caught through observation either by you or one of our dentists.

A few signs you may have a cavity include:

  • Pain when biting down
  • Toothache or out-of-the-blue tooth pain
  • Sensitive teeth that react to hot, cold, sweet, or acidic foods and beverages
  • Pits or holes in your teeth that are clearly visible
  • Staining on any surface of tooth that is brown, black, or white

If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms above, please call our Jackson, MI, dental office so our dentists can take a closer look. If the cavity is too large, we may choose to place a protective dental crown.

Easy Steps to Keep Tooth Decay Away

Our dentists want your smile to be as healthy as possible so on top of regular dental check-ups every 6 months, it’s encouraged that you also care for your teeth and gums at home. We’ve lined up a few things to consider below.

1. Set and Follow a Daily Oral Health Routine

If you have been a little lax with your oral hygiene lately, now is the time to really commit to the process of keeping your mouth clean every day. The general rule of thumb is to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss once daily. Be sure to brush every tooth surface and clear any debris or food particle from in between your teeth.

2. Choose Fluoride for Your Teeth

Make sure that at least the toothpaste you use contains fluoride. Fluoride is your teeth’s best friend as it works to rebuild weakened enamel, slow down the loss of minerals from enamel, and reverse early tooth decay. Aside from its presence inside dental care products, many communities add fluoride into the public water supply for residents. Our dentists or hygienists would be happy to recommend a fluoride toothpaste if needed!

3. See Our Dentists Every Six Months

Unless you have a dental emergency that requires more frequent attention, our dentists would like to see you in our Jackson dental office every 6 months for an oral exam and teeth cleaning. Even if all is well, these visits allow for our dentists to monitor your oral health and take note of any developing areas of concern.

4. Pick Healthy Foods and Drinks

A balanced diet not only does a body good, but it helps your mouth out as well. Deciding to enjoy a glass of water instead of soda or juice, for example, washes away leftover bits of food and doesn’t leave sugar behind on teeth. Eating healthier foods will not only limit the amount of plaque that develops on your teeth, but they’ll give you more energy as well.

5. Use a Mouthwash

Swishing with a fluoride or antibacterial mouthwash after brushing and flossing your teeth can reduce your risk for cavities. In general, mouthwash works to stop plaque from building up, strengthens enamel, and kills bacteria capable of causing gum infection or disease. It can also help reach areas otherwise not accessed by a toothbrush.

6. Ask About Dental Sealants

Though dental sealants may be a more popular preventive treatment for children, they can also benefit adults. Once applied, sealants are designed to prevent decay from entering the fine grooves and pits located on molars.

Learn MoreDental Sealants: Who Needs Them?

These narrow, hard-to-clean “fissures” are commonly found on back teeth which makes them especially susceptible to cavities. Even the bristles of a toothbrush may not be able to reach inside these areas to properly get rid of any plaque or food particles. If you’re at higher risk for cavities, ask our dentists today about sealants for your smile.

Practice Daily Care & Skip the Fillings

Take care of your teeth and gums and never take a healthy smile for granted. Cavities are easily prevented at home, but if you find yourself with one, our dentists in Jackson, MI, can help restore your tooth. In the meantime, request an appointment for your next cleaning by calling The Dental Experience at (517) 787-5367.

This blog post has been updated.

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