So it is a Friday night and you are about and about and you meet someone cute. You introduce yourself and flash a smile but then things take a turn for the worst. Your pearly whites are encumbered by darkened holes that not only look frighteningly unhygienic but actually are!
So what are these date-ruining holes in your teeth? You probably already know that these are cavities – the direct and most prominent effect of tooth decay. You see, when you eat food that has a lot of sugar and starch in them, the bacteria that are in your mouth break them down and turn them into acidic plaque. The plaque that clings to your teeth begins to wear them down, make them decay, and form cavities in your teeth.
Horrible, right? So how do we prevent these nasty cavities from forming up? Here are the 5 most common ways, recommended by dentists, to make sure your smile never has to be compromised by cavities and tooth decay ever again.
1. Brush Your Teeth Frequently
Perhaps the most obvious way to prevent tooth decay is to brush your teeth at least 3 times a day. After all, we have already established that cavities were the result of acidic plaque caused by food debris and bacteria. The easiest solution, therefore, is to make sure that food debris is no longer available for that to happen.
Brushing your teeth may seem too laborious and unimportant to someone whose day is jam-packed with work and studies, but it is the easiest and cheapest step that you can take to make sure the problem doesn’t escalate into something more expensive.
2. Cut Back On Candy and Sugary Drinks
Are you a dessert person? You are certainly not alone! Out of all the delectable and decadent food items that you can possibly put in your mouth, none can ramp up those happy hormones more than sweets. We have already talked about how the bacteria that cause plaque and therefore tooth decay work on these, however, so the best thing you can do to prevent cavities is to simply cut back on all of the sugar, as difficult as it may be.
If you are not so keen on giving up that slice of red velvet cheesecake you snuck from your grandma’s refrigerator, you can still prevent plaque buildup by simply not leaving it in your mouth for more than 20-30 minutes. Rinse your mouth with water and mouthwash immediately after consumption.
3. Put that Cigarette Down
Beyond the usual focus on bacteria, starch, and sugar – there is also tobacco and nicotine in it. The absolute worst thing that you can do to your oral health is smoke. When it comes to tooth decay, tobacco can even be worse than sugar. Beyond just cavities, it will give you a wide array of other oral problems such as bad breath.
4. Find the Right Mouthwash
Another thing you can add to your cavity-fighting arsenal is the right mouthwash. You want to find a mouthwash that does not contain too much alcohol and is not too harsh on the mouth.
5. Don’t Forget To Floss
Just like brushing your teeth, preventing cavities is simply a matter of getting rid of food residue and plaque. The problem with toothbrush bristles, though, is they generally can’t reach in between the teeth. Flossing regularly is an easy fix for that so that you can be sure that there is absolutely nothing left for those nasty bacteria to digest into acid.
So there you have it, the best steps that you can take to make sure those cavities do not have to ruin your date night. With discipline and an intelligent oral hygiene routine, preventing cavities naturally does not have to be hard at all.