How to Stop Tooth Decay and Prevent Major Dental Issues

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Learn how to stop tooth decay and prevent expensive dental issues.

Even a small amount of tooth decay can quickly lead to more severe problems such as tooth loss, which can result in costly dental procedures such as root canals and implants. Luckily, these problems are typically avoidable as long as you follow certain dental health guidelines. To help improve your oral health, we’ve put together some easy tips that will teach you how to stop tooth decay from either developing or worsening:

Brush Your Teeth Twice Per Day

The first general rule in avoiding oral health issues such as cavities, tooth decay, and tooth loss is to brush your teeth twice per day. Unfortunately, with the hustle and bustle of daily life, many people neglect to follow even this simple regimen. If you’re the type of person to skip brushing your teeth because you’re too tired at night, it’s time to make some changes to your schedule so that you can stick with it.

Floss at Least Once Per Day

The early stages of tooth decay will often start because of plaque buildup on and between your teeth. You should be flossing your teeth at least once per day, but preferably twice or even after each meal. If the gaps between your teeth are a bit tight, you might want to pick up a type of floss called Glide, which is designed for these troublesome spots.

Schedule Regular Dental Visits

First off, getting your teeth cleaned every six months will go a long way to helping you prevent cavities and tooth decay. This also gives your dental office a chance to properly examine your teeth and suggest needed procedures such as fluoride treatments or dental sealants. By catching dental issues early, you’ll be able to stop damage before it turns into something much worse.

Ask Your Dentist About Sealants

Speaking of dental sealants, this can be a great solution for people having problems with tooth decay. Dental sealants are thin, plastic coatings that are applied to the molars (back teeth) and will protect them from bacteria that can often get stuck in the pits and grooves in the teeth. Although this has process been more popular with kids, it’s been increasingly used by adults in recent years.

Drink Several Glasses of Water Per Day

Everyone knows that drinking plenty of water each day is good for your overall health. Although the whole idea of eight glasses per day that many of us grew up with may not be absolutely necessary, several glasses is definitely the way to go. In addition to being good for your body, water will wash away a lot of the food remnants, sugars, starches, and acids that can linger following a meal.

Rinse with a Fluoride Mouthwash

Fluoride has been found to be so beneficial to your dental health that many areas have added it to their tap water. In addition to brushing and flossing every day, you should also add a fluoride mouthwash into the mix. This mouthwash is extremely good at killing bacteria that can cause gingivitis and other dental problems that could lead to tooth decay and more serious issues.

Avoid Sugary Foods and Drinks

Let’s not mince words here – processed sugars are terrible for your health. When sugars are allowed to stay on your teeth for a prolonged period of time – or even for a somewhat short time – this will basically eat through your teeth, leading to tooth decay and more severe problems. You can prevent tooth decay by avoiding sugary foods and drinks, along with brushing your teeth if you do ingest anything with sugar in it.

Avoid Acidic Foods and Drinks

Acidic foods and drinks can be almost as bad as those with a high level of sugar. The acids that are found in certain items, including citrus fruits, will eat through your tooth enamel and leave your teeth vulnerable to damage. The same general rules apply here as they do for eating sugary foods – reduce your intake, brush regularly, and drink water to rinse your teeth.

Visit a Dentist at the First Sign of Tooth Decay

Another big reason why tooth decay and other severe dental issues are able to develop is because people avoid going to the dentist. Even if you pay close attention to your dental health, problems with your teeth and gums can arise. Seeing the dentist for a checkup every six months is a solid strategy, but don’t wait until your next scheduled appointment if you notice that there’s something wrong.

Contact Dr. Ferullo to Learn How to Stop Tooth Decay

These dental health tips will teach you how to stop tooth decay from becoming an issue or getting worse. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment with our Dentist in St. Petersburg, call Dr. Ferullo at (727) 822-8101.

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