Tooth decay can be a serious problem, especially in children. Often we recognize the cavity after it has eaten away at the tooth, left a hole, and, maybe, even caused a toothache. With proper care, brushing, and healthy eating habits, much tooth decay might be avoided. It’s important to understand what causes tooth decay and how it can be stopped and, even, reversed. Regular visits to your family dentist in Cypress are one crucial thing that should be done for every member of the family. However, there are good oral health habits that can be practiced at home.
First, it’s important to understand how tooth decay begins. Certain bacteria in the mouth feed on the sugars contained in foods and drinks. These bacteria reside on the gums, teeth, and in plaque buildup. As the bacteria eat the sugar, they produce certain acids. These acids, in turn, work on the enamel of your teeth, causing the tooth surface to lose important minerals. These minerals are what make the tooth enamel one of the toughest materials in your body. Your family dentist in Cypress can recognize early signs of tooth decay during biannual checkups.
As a tooth loses minerals due to the acid from the bacterial, a faint white area appears. This whitish area is a sign of early tooth decay and, when identified, should be treated immediately. At this point, the tooth decay can be reversed. Later, once the surface of the tooth breaks down, it is not possible to reverse the damage, and your family dentist in Cypress mush repair the cavity with a filling.
One important tool for fighting early tooth decay is fluoride. Fluoride has been shown to help add and replace the minerals in the tooth that are being lost due to the acid from bacterial action. When the tooth decay is still in its early stages (a white area on the tooth surface) the fluoride can repair the damage and save the tooth from the oncoming decay. Good oral health practices used at home include using fluoride toothpaste and fluoride mouthwash. Your family dentist in Cypress may also, treat your mouth with a fluoride rinse during your biannual checkup. Other important steps you can take at home include regular brushing, flossing, and watching between meal snacks, especially those high in sugar. It is especially important not to eat a sugary snack after the final brushing for the day or just before bed.
One of the most important steps you can take to good oral health is to schedule your bi-annual visits to your family dentist in Cypress. You’ll be happy to receive a good bill of health or important help with an oral health plan to keep your mouth, gums, and teeth in top shape. Call our office today to schedule your checkup or, if you are a new patient, an initial consultation. Our friendly staff will be happy to assist you, 281-376-4444.