Tooth decay is the most prevalent dental disease. Some of our favorite foods are loaded with unhealthy sugar and other acidic elements that can damage your teeth’s enamel. This can lead to cavities, which are bad for your teeth and can be detrimental to your general health.
Luckily, in the early stages, some options don’t involve a visit to your dentist. However, once a cavity has penetrated the dentine, you might not have another option.
The best way to fix problems is to avoid them in the first place. You can take specific measures to prevent or minimize cavities.
Changing your diet to reduce sugar intake can have a reversing effect on early or soon-to-appear tooth decay. Healthier habits can include adding more calcium-rich foods or avoiding sugary, carbonated drinks that cause plaque and tartar accumulation.
Good dental hygiene is essential; brush twice and floss once daily. Ensure you use mouthwash, too. On top of freshening your breath, it can also help prevent plaque build-up.
Lastly, adding some vitamins and supplements to your diet could help. Balanced amounts of micronutrients in the body can help with tooth decay and cavities by reducing inflammation and increasing saliva production. However, ensure you consult your dentist or another medical professional before taking vitamins or supplements.
You can do things at home to try and treat early cavities before you head to the dentist.
A simple technique that comes from an ancient system of folk medicine and involves swishing sesame or coconut oil in your mouth for about 20 minutes (make sure you spit out the oil in a garbage can, not the sink). It’s been found this can help reduce plaque and bacteria, and with remineralization of tooth enamel and cavity prevention.
Use it instead of the usual toothpaste. Aloe vera can help fight the bacteria that cause cavities. It’s a good option if you have sensitive teeth as it doesn’t have the abrasives found in commercial toothpaste.
Vitamin D is essential for tooth mineralization and can help strengthen tooth enamel. Getting some vitamin D in your diet may contribute to the general reduction of dental cavities.
Chewing gum can be unexpectedly beneficial. It stimulates the salivary glands, raises the acidity of plaque, and reduces bacteria, helping with your overall dental health.
Despite some controversy around fluoride, it’s deemed safe and beneficial for use in toothpaste. The key ingredient can strengthen your teeth and help prevent serious issues. Just make sure you don’t swallow it.
It’s too late; you’ve developed a cavity, and dealing with it at home is no longer an option. A dentist can catch deep cavities before they get worse, with early detection benefiting later treatment.
Your dentist might recommend professional fluoride treatments. They may use fillings when the cavity has progressed beyond the enamel. A crown might be necessary if the decay is extensive.
If it’s even more severe and in your tooth’s pulp, a complex root canal may be necessary. In the most extreme cases, they may have to extract the tooth.
Cavities are largely avoidable. Even when they do crop up, early treatment can prevent major issues.
While these tips for how to fix cavities may help prevent them or slow them down, in the end, you may still need a dentist. Kool Smiles partner dentists will be ready to help! You can reach us at 888-544-9644 or click here to find a location near you.