Five ways you can lower your cavity risk when you just can’t seem to stop them.
“I don’t understand,” she said to me. “I do everything right. I brush two minutes a day. I floss every day. I’m so careful! How am I still getting cavities?”
This is an issue I face with people every so often in my practice, and it hurts to hear. It’s not fair, and it’s not justice. If you’re good to your teeth, they should be good to you, right?
Many people ask me if there is anything else that can be done to prevent cavities from forming. Fortunately, there is. Here are a few ways you can help every day:
- Use Prevident 5000 toothpaste. Prevident is an ultra high fluoride toothpaste, and is the only prescription toothpaste that has been proven to prevent and even sometimes reverse early cavities. Most dentists carry it and often prescribe it to help when cavities are becoming a problem. Some medical insurance even covers it as a prescription.
- Chew xylitol gum. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that the bacteria that causes cavities can’t digest. It can also help stimulate saliva flow, which is a natural defense against cavities.
- Bleach rinse. Studies have shown that very watered down bleach (2 teaspoons per 8 oz of water) can help with plaque buildup. It does tend to cause some (removable) stains on teeth, so this is only recommended for people who need extra help with cavities or gingivitis and need only be done in two week increments.
- Whitening. Believe it or not, regular whitening has been shown to reduce gingivitis (inflamed gums). The hydrogen peroxide used to whiten the teeth has an antibacterial effect.
- Do at-home fluoride treatments. Fluoride trays or varnish can be an excellent way to strength and remineralize your teeth.
There are a ton of other options. Since Paloma Dental is committed to preventive medicine, we even have a special preventative treatment plan for people at high risk for cavities and other smile health issues. Make an appointment with us by emailing [email protected] or calling 720-440-7743. We would love to chat with you about any questions you may have!