Here we are again with the age-old topic. How to take care of our teeth, especially if they are more at risk of developing dental caries? With dentists lamenting about dental hygiene since time immemorial, you would think that people would have actually become more conscious about their teeth and overall oral health. But you would be surprised to know that over 50% of people are only once-a-day brushes. Well, thanks to medical advancements, we have effective ways at hand to combat such situations in the initial stages to avoid a more invasive procedure at a later stage. All we have to do is keep up with our half-yearly dental check-ups and seek preventative dental care. But who are we kidding? There are many who would fail to make time even for those.
This brings us back to the topic of this blog. First, stand in front of the mirror, and open your mouth wide (Just enough to see your back molars. Please do not dislocate your jaw on my account). Do you see those pits and grooves on the top surface of your molars? This area is notorious for being cavity prone. The fissures on the surface are the perfect place for the remnants of food to get lodged, and it is a spot that is easy to miss when brushing or flossing. Now usually, people seek out professional help only after something catastrophic happens or when they start experiencing pain. The thing with caries is that you will not experience any pain until much later, which means that by the time you go to a dentist, the damage is far more serious than the beginning signs of caries.
If you are reading this, you may be wondering, other than going to a dentist and getting regular checkups, what can I do to get back on track, and what are some tips to have good oral hygiene?
Dentists are your second line of defence, while good personal dental hygiene is the first. The most important thing is that you brush your teeth and gumline twice daily, floss at least once a day (the keyword here being “at least”), clean your tongue and drink loads of water.
While brushing regularly remains the undefeated, fool-proof way of maintaining oral hygiene-there are other things you can do (in addition, of course) to avoid toothaches or worse-tooth loss.
First of all-know your cavity-risk level
The first step to reasserting control over your dental health is being aware of your cavity risk level. Now, you may think that aren’t we all equally at risk of getting cavities?
Well, the answer to that is yes and no! Caries sees no bias. It believes in attacking all our pearly whites without any discrimination. But some people may be more susceptible to these attacks, for instance, diabetes patients, people who smoke or have had a history of smoking etc. The best way to ascertain our risk level is by getting a dentist to assess it for us through a comprehensive dental exam. Based on the analysis, your dentist can better advise you on treatment plans, schedule your dental checkups and suggest relevant changes in your dental care regime.
The next tip happens to be everybody’s favorite-Cut back on sugary/acidic drinks.
“I can’t start my day without coffee!” or “Nobody will talk to me before I have had my morning tea.” How many of you said this at least once in your life? When you start your day with these beverages, you risk prolonged exposure of teeth to acidic and sugary drinks that leaves them vulnerable to new cavities. It would be unrealistic to ask you to cut them out altogether. What you can do is:
- Follow up your beverage intake with a glass of water to balance out the sugar levels in your saliva.
- Rinse your mouth thoroughly after 20 minutes or less of having coffee.
- Use a straw to sip your coffee to minimize its contact with your teeth.
Another important preventive measure is *cue the drumroll* Dental Floss.
Brushing alone is not enough. You have to floss. It’s not an option as most people see it and is just as important as brushing. Brushing alone will lead you to miss plaque between the crevices of the teeth and below the gum line that brushing can’t reach. If plaque isn’t removed daily, you can get gingivitis or tooth decay, and if left untreated, it can even lead to tooth loss. You also must know the correct way of flossing. If you use want to use string floss. Hold the floss tightly between your thumbs and forefingers and gently insert it between the teeth. Curve the dental floss against the side of the tooth in a ‘C’ shape. Rub the floss gently up and down, keeping it pressed against the tooth. As you move from tooth to tooth, unwind the clean floss and take up the used floss with the opposite finger.
As previously discussed, the molars are more susceptible to developing dental caries. But lucky for us, we have dental sealants to our rescue. Sealants are protective coatings that cover these grooves on molars. These can provide protection against 80% of cavities in the back teeth. You can discuss the efficacy of sealants with your dentist.
Last but not least, Do not miss out on your dental check-ups!
Regular dental checkups are just as important as overall health checkups. You must follow the checkup schedule formulated by your dentist. Trust me! they know what’s going on. The schedule is specifically based on your unique dental requirements. Even if you have good dental health, it’s essential to maintain it and detect any dental issues in the initial stages. So make sure you see your dentist at least half yearly for professional Dental Cleaning Mississauga and oral examination.
Are you struggling to maintain your oral health? We are here to help. At AIMS Dentistry we help our patients learn the best way to combat dental issues through a multitude of comprehensive services like Teeth Cleaning Mississauga, root canal, teeth whitening, Invisalign and much more. From beautifying your smile to keeping it intact for years to come, we have got it all covered.