Preventive dentistry basically consists of caring for your teeth to keep them healthy. This helps to avoid cavities, gum disease, enamel wear, and more.
There are many forms of preventive dentistry, such as daily brushing and dental cleanings. To maintain optimal oral health, the American Dental Association (ADA) recommends visits to the dentist at regular intervals of minimum once every 6 month . These practices are designed to ensure that teeth are clean, strong, and white. Children should be taught proper oral hygiene at an early age.
Preventative dentistry starts with proper home care.
Brush Your Teeth Daily
The most important part of preventive dentistry is to brush your teeth daily with fluoride toothpaste . Most people should replace their toothbrushes three to four times per year or as the bristles start to fray.
Don’t forget to brush your tongue. This will help remove bacteria from your mouth and also help freshen your breath.
Daily flossing after meals is highly recommended. Flossing helps to clean out the tight spaces between the teeth. If you have braces, you may need to use floss threaders to get between the metal brackets. Ask your dentist which type of floss is best for you.
To get the most benefit out of flossing, you’ll want to make sure you’re flossing in the correct way. At your next dental appointment, ask your dentist for a quick flossing demonstration to make sure you’re getting the full benefit from using this tool.
Visit Your Dentist
You should see your dentist at least twice per year for an exam to check for any problems in the teeth or gums. If you’re at a high risk for dental problems, you’ll likely benefit from more frequent dental visits.Dental cleanings and exams allow dentists to identify problems and take care of them right away.
If you have dental insurance, find out what’s covered. Many insurance plans cover two preventive dental visits per year.
Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating a balanced diet also helps to protect your teeth by providing them with the nutrients they need. Limit your sugar intake, including simple carbohydrates like white bread, and drink plenty of water throughout the day.
Some foods and drinks can cause harm to your teeth such as soda or high sugar contact drinks. They change the acidity of your mouth environment and cause damage to your enamel.it is recommended to limit the consumption of these harmful drinks.
Vitamins are important for oral health. Eating a varied diet will help you to get all of the vitamins you need to maintain a healthy smile.
Many people suffer from dry mouth which can couse rapid growing and aggressive tooth decay.there are many reasons for Dry mouth such as
Medications. Hundreds of medications, including many over-the-counter drugs, produce dry mouth as a side effect. Among the more likely types to cause problems are some of the drugs used to treat depression, high blood pressure and anxiety, as well as some antihistamines, decongestants, muscle relaxants and pain medications.
Aging. Many older people experience dry mouth as they age. Contributing factors include the use of certain medications, changes in the body’s ability to process medication, inadequate nutrition, and having long-term health problems.
Cancer therapy. Chemotherapy drugs can change the nature of saliva and the amount produced. This may be temporary, with normal salivary flow returning after treatment is completed. Radiation treatments to your head and neck can damage salivary glands, causing a marked decrease in saliva production. This may be temporary or permanent, depending on the radiation dose and area treated.
Nerve damage. An injury or surgery that causes nerve damage to your head and neck area can result in dry mouth.
Other health conditions. Dry mouth can be due to certain health conditions, such as diabetes, stroke, yeast infection (thrush) in your mouth or Alzheimer’s disease, or due to autoimmune diseases, such as Sjogren’s syndrome or HIV/AIDS. Snoring and breathing with your mouth open also can contribute to dry mouth.
Tobacco and alcohol use. Drinking alcohol and smoking or chewing tobacco can increase dry mouth symptoms.
Recreational drug use. Methamphetamine use can cause severe dry mouth and damage to teeth, a condition also known as “meth mouth.” Marijuana also can cause dry mouth.
It is very important to diagnose dry mouth in early stages before it has irreversible damages to teeth and gums.
Treatment for dry mouth most times can be as easy as
- Hydrating more frequently
- Chewing on specific saliva producing gums
- Changing your tooth paste to high flourid concentation tooth paste
- Getting supplemental fluoride
Ask your dentist which solution is best for your condition
What Does Preventive Dentistry Do?
Preventive dentistry prevents people from developing dental problems later on. If you use proper dental care, you can avoid or lessen the effects of these:
- enamel loss
Who Benefits from Preventive Dentistry?
Everyone benefits from preventive dentistry. Children, in particular, benefit because it allows their newly developing adult teeth to come in strong and healthy. Dental sealants and topical fluoride treatments help prevent decay in your children’s teeth. If you’re an aging adult, you can benefit from preventive dentistry because it helps you to keep your real teeth.
Oral health is connected to the health of your body as a whole. This is because the mouth is a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Maintaining a clean mouth benefits your overall health.
What Are the Benefits of Preventive Dentistry?
With good dental hygiene, you can greatly reduce your risk of getting cavities, gingivitis, periodontitis, and other dental problems. This, in turn, can reduce your risk of secondary problems caused by poor oral health. Some health problems that may be linked to poor oral health are:
- heart disease
- respiratory disease
Premature birth and low birth weight may also be linked to poor oral health. You should continue to practice or adopt good preventive oral health if you’re pregnant. This includes visiting your dentist for routine checkups during your pregnancy.
In addition to reducing your risk for other health issues, practicing good preventive health can save you money. Even with dental insurance, the costs associated with poor oral hygiene can add up. While preventive dentistry may not completely eliminate your need for fillings, root canals, or dental implants, it can go a long way in reducing your need for these costly treatments.