How to Prevent Cavities

How to Prevent Cavities

The habits a parent teaches and the habits a child learns over time can play a major role in their oral as well as overall health. From early childhood, it is essential for children to know how important their teeth and gums are. The following steps can help prevent cavities: 

Brushing & Flossing

Brushing and flossing are extremely important when it comes to preventing cavities in your child's teeth. You should brush and floss your child's teeth every day. These habits should start as soon as your child gets his or her first tooth or at one year of age.

Regular Dental Visits

Children, especially younger ones, may not understand why going to the dentist is important. Regular visits allow the dentist to keep an eye on your child's teeth and make sure they're developing properly. Cavities often start as surface stains and progress into deeper decay, which can become painful. Through regular dental visits, the dentist can identify and treat issues early on.

Avoid Sugary Foods

Cavities are caused by a buildup of plaque that mixes with sugar and produces acid that eats away at teeth. The best thing you can do is avoid giving your child sugary snacks and drinks. Sweet and sticky foods can cling to teeth, increasing the risk of cavities.

Avoid Sticky Foods

Sugary and sticky foods can get stuck in the small crevices of your child's teeth. The longer these foods remain in the mouth, the more likely it is your child will develop a cavity. Sticky foods also encourage bacterial growth, which converts sugars into acids that erode the tooth enamel, causing cavities. So, limit these foods.

Fluoride Treatments

Fluoride treatments can help prevent cavities. Fluoride is a mineral that's found naturally in soil and water. It's also found in certain foods. It's known for strengthening tooth enamel and making it more resistant to decay.

Sealants

Sealants are thin, plastic coatings that are applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. This plastic barrier helps to protect teeth from bacteria and acids. The barrier prevents food and plaque from getting stuck in the grooves of the back teeth, which can often be difficult to clean properly.

Pacifiers

Even though pacifiers help children sleep at night, they can cause tooth decay because they keep their saliva from washing away food particles in the mouth.

For this reason, children should not use pacifiers after the age of two. If your child is above two and uses a pacifier, talk to your dentist about the use of preventive strategies, such as fluoride varnish and dental sealants.

At J. Russell Danner, DDS, we offer the best dental care possible to each of our patients in a positive and relaxing environment. If you're ready to experience the best dental care, please contact us at 405-749-1676 or visit us at 4514 Memorial Cir Suite A, Oklahoma City, OK 73142.