Major causes of cavities and some home remedies
Dental cavities are nothing but small holes on the hard surfaces of the teeth. These are also the breeding ground for bacteria known as ‘Streptococcus mutans’. Bacteria cause plaque – which removes minerals from the tooth enamel resulting in tooth erosions causing tiny holes or dental cavities.
Some of the main factors for tooth decay or cavities include:
- Sweets, candies or sticky foods which stick to your teeth
- Aerated drinks like soda, alcohol and sugary foods like ice cream and chocolates
- Acidity or heartburns
- Infant nap feedings
- Inadequate oral care
- Increased dryness in the mouth
If you get your invisalign or traditional braces done or if you are undergoing any similar dental treatments – it is imperative to take good care of your oral hygiene. If not, the wires or attachments of braces can build-up plaque to result in tooth decay or cavities. Invisalign also causes dryness in the mouth and hence the doctor always advises you to drink loads of water to flush out the bacteria.
Cavities can also be formed because of bad diet or lack of vitamin D in your diet. If your cavities are at the beginning stage, simple home remedies can work wonders. But if it penetrates the dentin, it is best to seek the help of a dental professional. Some of the best home remedies to get rid of cavities are:
Chewing sugar-free gum
Studies have revealed that chewing sugar-free gum after every meal can remineralize tooth enamel. Chewing gum containing xylitol stimulates the production of saliva. This, in turn, balances the pH of plaque and reduces the bacterial activity. The gums which contain casein phosphopeptide-amorphous calcium phosphate (CPP-ACP) are also known to be effective in reducing cavities.
Intake of Vitamin D
Lack of vitamin D in your diet can trigger tooth decays. Hence, it is crucial to eat foods which aid in the absorption of Phosphorus and calcium. Dairy food products like milk, cheese and yoghurt are rich in Vitamin D and can also reverse cavities. It is also good to get exposed to sunlight, for about 20 to 30 minutes every day – to get enough of this vitamin.
Oral care and hygiene
Use of fluoride toothpaste is best advised to avoid cavities and to restore the tooth enamel. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing regularly can remove the food particles, from every hook and corner of your mouth. Fluoride mouthwashes can be carried while travelling or to workplaces, to rinse off after every meal. A simple and an easy tip to follow is – to apply the fluoride toothpaste and leave it on the tooth overnight – this can be a great way to get rid of cavities.
A traditional method which has been practised over the years is oil pulling. It involves swishing coconut oil or sesame oil, in your mouth – for about 25 to 30minutes and then spitting it out. This ensures removal of toxins from your body. Studies have also revealed that following this routine regularly can reduce gingivitis, plaque or any other gum diseases.
Liquorice root extract
Use of Chinese liquorice plant extracts can significantly reduce cavities. One of the researchers revealed this and has also created liquorice lollipops to help fight against cavities or tooth decay. This extracts can help in minimising the growth of ‘Streptococcus mutans’ bacteria in the mouth. Long term usage can assure to completely get rid of cavities.
However, if the cavities are intense and if no home remedies seem to help. It is best to visit a dental expert immediately. Early diagnosis can reduce complications and the treatments at this stage can be pain-free and simple. Some of the treatments done by dentists for cavities are:
- Fillings – Fillings are one of the most common dental treatments to prevent the bacteria from causing furthermore damage to the teeth. This treatment is easier and also the least expensive of all.
- Crowns – When the tooth is severely damaged or broken. The dentist makes use of crowns to restore the broken teeth and it is mostly used in combination with dental implants and bridges.
- Root canal treatment – When the tooth decay reaches the pulp or the interiors, a dentist or endodontists perform this procedure to remove the tooth pulp and tooth nerve.
- Fluoride treatments – If the dentists feel that your normal fluoride usage is insufficient. He or she can prescribe strong fluoride toothpaste or mouth rinses as a part of this treatment.
- Tooth extractions – Tooth decay or cavities not just affect the oral health. It is also the main root cause of bad breath or odour. Your dentist can suggest you go for tooth extraction in order to avoid more damage or infections.
Instead of spending a fortune on these expensive and painful treatments – it is better to follow a regular dental check-up routine.