Ways To Prevent Tooth Cavities

Tooth cavities are the result of damage to your teeth's enamel, or protective layer, to the point that holes develop in the teeth (via the Mayo Clinic). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), tooth decay is one of America's most common dental issues. Statistics reveal that every 1 in 4 adults between the ages of 20 to 64 has a cavity. It's also a critical problem in adolescents aged 12 to 19, affecting a whopping 57% of people in this age group. Moreover, the CDC has found that untreated cavities are a significant problem among kids from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. 

As per WebMD, you can tell if you have cavities in several ways. You may notice increased sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, or a stabbing toothache when chewing or biting. In addition, shooting pain might begin at any time without warning, and there may be holes in your teeth. Since cavities damage the enamel, you may notice that the white layering is eroded or brown, black, or yellow, per WebMD.

Best ways to prevent tooth cavities

Following proper dental hygiene practices is critical to prevent tooth cavities. According to WebMD, it's important to brush your teeth twice daily, typically after meals or consuming sugary items. You may want to be mindful of your brushing technique, brush quality, and toothpaste. Fluoride-containing toothpaste can provide protection for your teeth, according to WebMD. It's also advised to use mouthwash every day — using mouthwash with antiseptic properties can prevent bacterial buildup and plaque formation. 

According to the Cleveland Clinic, you may also want to visit your dentist at least twice every year for thorough dental check-ups. This is necessary to reduce the risk of bacterial infections or plaque and prevent decay. Another significant risk factor for cavities is consuming too much sugar. For this reason, you may want to avoid eating too many sugary drinks or foods, such as candy and sodas (via Healthline). Instead, Oral-B recommends eating fruits, veggies, and fiber-rich foods, such as whole wheat bread and rice, to build your defenses. Oral-B also advises increasing your calcium intake, as it can protect against tooth decay.