If you think that dental caries aren’t a major concern without the presence of a toothache, you’re mistaken.
Even if they aren’t causing you discomfort, they should be seen to by a dentist as soon as possible. Also, by the time you feel pain from decay, it is typically a major and possibly expensive procedure.
While they’re typically not life-threatening, caries are a disease and one that is now said to be communicable so family members can transmit this disease to one another through sharing spoons. If you have a cavity or several cavities in your mouth, you should not share cutlery with anyone — especially small children or babies, for instance.
Putting a child’s pacifier in your mouth and then into your child’s mouth, for example, can spread the S. Mutans bacteria to their mouth and cause cavities.
Protecting Your Teeth
What can you do to help reduce dental cavities and protect your smile?
Careful and fastidious dental hygiene is crucial. This is the case regardless of your age.
If you are a parent, lead by example and pay careful attention to your kids’ teeth.
For babies, their teeth and gums should be cleaned regularly and children should be taught careful oral hygiene habits early on.
Until your child is school-aged, you should perform the cleaning for your children and even once they get older, it’s never a bad idea to either supervise or to double-check their work.
Dental caries can be prevented with brushing and flossing with fluoride toothpaste. And, fluoride varnish has also been founds to reduce the instances of dental problems.
A dental professional will paint on a protective coating and this helps to rebuild decalcified areas of the tooth, which can halt tooth decay so it doesn’t get any worse.
This process helps reduce pain and sensitivity due to recession and actually remineralizes the tooth.
Is Fluoride Safe?
There are debates about fluoride and its safety. Fluoride is the most recommended form of prevention against dental caries and is considered safe when given in low dosages. Fluoride is only considered to be toxic when it’s given in extremely high doses.
So, if you don’t have any cavities, good for you! If you do, be sure that you don’t neglect them.
Choose dental hygiene products with fluoride and don’t forget to see your dentist and hygienist at least twice a year!