It’s that time of the year again – time for your dental checkup! Although you love the feeling you get after having your teeth cleaned, you might dread hearing the news that you always seem to get, no matter what: “You have cavities!” Sigh…
Why is it that you get so many cavities, even though you follow all the recommendations and work hard at keeping your teeth clean? Especially when you know people who don’t do so well but never seem to get decay. If you’d like some clarification on this topic, a dentist explains why every mouth is different and what you can do to reduce your risk for future decay.
Why Are Some People More Cavity-Prone?
While brushing and flossing are certainly helpful, there’s more to this situation than meets the eye! Here are several factors that may contribute to a high cavity rate:
- Diet – “Sip all day, get decay.” If you sip, graze or snack on anything sugary throughout the day, your chances of getting cavities increase by quite a bit.
- Dry Mouth – Saliva not only washes away plaque and bacteria, it neutralizes the acids that can attack your teeth. Without it, you’re much more likely to decay.
- Genetics – From a genetic standpoint, some people are more susceptible to the strain of bacteria that cause cavities. Unfortunately, this factor is out of your control!
- Tooth Anatomy – If you have crowded teeth, it’s much harder to access some of the areas where plaque and bacteria are hiding. If you brush and floss regularly but still miss these areas, a cavity can easily form.
- Gum Recession – When the gums recede, the root of the tooth is exposed, which isn’t covered with protective enamel like the rest of the tooth. This exposed area is much softer and can easily develop a cavity.
What Can You Do To Reduce Your Risk?
Here is how you can counteract some of the factors that may be acting as strikes against your oral health.
- See your dentist regularly – With regular checkups, your dentist can determine which factors are problems for you and can help you address those issues specifically. They’ll also have a chance to catch any potential cavities when they’re small and easy to fix.
- Brush and floss – Brushing twice a day and flossing once will go a long way towards prevention!
- Reduce sugars – Sugars are everywhere, and can include things like coffee with sugar, soda, dried fruit or juice. Try to minimize these kinds of foods, and be sure to consume anything sugary in one sitting instead of grazing or sipping throughout the day.
- Use the right products – Your dentist can prescribe a special, high-fluoride toothpaste that can make a big difference. They can also discuss dry mouth products, electric toothbrushes, and hygiene aids that can help.
Now that you know a little more about why cavities form and how to prevent them, your luck at the dentist is about to change!
About the Author
All of the doctors at Painseville Dental Group are dedicated to providing their community with the best possible dental care. They understand how frustrating it can be to have ongoing dental problems, and always take the time to educate their patients about how to prevent those problems from the start. They can be reached via their website, or at (440) 354-2183.