Eliminating Tooth Decay

Tooth decay can be defined as the breakdown of the tooth. It affects both the enamel and the dentin layer of the teeth.

Tooth decay happens when foods containing a lot of starches and sugars (such as milk, soda, cakes, cereals, and candy) are left on your teeth. Bacteria that harbor in your mouth that help you digest these foods turn these particles into acids. When you add the bacteria, debris, acid, and saliva all together, it forms plaque. The plaque loves to cling to your teeth.  The acids will eventually help the plaque diminish the enamel surface of your teeth, which creates holes in them called cavities.

To help prevent tooth decay you can do the following:

  • You can prevent tooth decay by brushing your teeth twice a day using fluoride toothpaste. It is even better if you brush your teeth right after each meal and especially before you go to sleep at night.
  • You need to floss daily. It’s common to forget to floss or think it is not important. By flossing you can get the plaque that builds up between your teeth and places that your tooth brush cannot reach.
  • Your diet should consist of nutritious meals. You should have a nice balanced diet with little to no snacks. You should try to eliminate carbohydrates such as sodas and candy, which can stick to your teeth. If you eat sticky foods, it is wise to brush your teeth immediately afterwards.
  • Visit your dentist for regular cleanings and exams. This is vital for healthy teeth because they will remove the plaque that tends to stick on there and can catch if you have gum disease early.

Of course, there are more ways you can prevent tooth decay, but these four are the most commonly recommended ways. To fully prevent tooth decay, it is wise to practice good oral hygiene, which consists of flossing and brushing twice a day. Make an appointment with us at our Kennewick dental office today to learn more about effective oral hygiene.