Cavities are a very common dental issue. They affect the teeth of millions of Americans, from young children to seniors and everyone in between. Despite being common, cavities are also preventable. Many people can prevent cavities with regular dental care. Some, however, are more prone than others. Sylvan Heights Dental can help with fluoride treatments.
Risk Factors for Cavities
Cavities can affect anyone. There are certain factors. However, that can make you more vulnerable. Risk factors for cavities include:
|Poor oral hygiene. Ignoring any part of your oral hygiene routine, whether it is skipping out on brushing here and there, forgoing flossing, or ignoring routine dental visits, can lead to a buildup of plaque and bacteria.
|Crooked teeth. If your teeth are crooked, they can be more difficult to clean thoroughly, allowing bacteria and plaque to accumulate.
|Tobacco products. Tobacco products can increase the stickiness of plaque, making it easier for bacteria to stick.
|Dry mouth. This is a condition in which your mouth does not have enough saliva, leaving it feeling dry and tacky. When your mouth is dry, bacteria thrive.
What Exactly is Fluoride?
Fluoride is an element that occurs naturally within your teeth.Along with other minerals, including calcium and phosphates, fluoride is essential for tooth strength. Every day, fluoride, and other minerals are leached from your teeth in a process called demineralization. Fluoride and other minerals can also be replaced.
The Importance of Fluoride for Your Oral Health
Fluoride is an incredibly important element in your teeth. It works to fight off acid attacks, keeping your enamel strong. By helping to strengthen your tooth enamel, fluoride helps to prevent the formation of decay and cavities. So long as you are replacing the same amount of fluoride as you are losing, your teeth can resist decay. However, if your teeth are losing more fluoride than you are replacing, your teeth are at greater risk.
There are many sources of fluoride. It can be found in trace amounts in certain foods. Treated tap water contains fluoride. There are also many different types of fluoridated oral care products. While these sources are sufficient for many, they may not be enough for others. There are also some who do not have access to treated tap water or other sources, and therefore may not be able to get enough fluoride. If you are at an increased risk for cavities, we can help with fluoride treatments.
Fluoride treatments are incredibly simple and straightforward. They are also completely non-invasive. Following cleaning of your teeth, a fluoride gel is painted onto the surfaces of your teeth. The gel absorbs directly into your tooth enamel, immediately going to work strengthening your teeth. There is no need to wash off or remove the gel from your teeth. We recommend not eating or drinking anything for at least 30 minutes after your treatment to ensure optimal fluoride absorption. Fluoride treatments are completely safe.
Fluoride treatments can provide you with an additional layer of protection against the formation of tooth decay and cavities. For more information about these treatments, and to find out if they are right for you, call Sylvan Heights Dental today at (503) 297-1471.