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Avoiding Dental Cavities; How to Stop & Reverse Your Child’s Tooth Decay Once it Has Started

Smile Reef

What is a cavity? Cavities, also called dental caries are holes in teeth that can get bigger and deeper over time. These holes are caused by tooth decay which originates from plaque. Plaque is a colorless, sticky film of bacteria that is constantly forming on your teeth and is the main cause of tooth decay. The bacteria in plaque reacts with sugar in the foods we eat and the beverages we drink. Then acids are produced and will attack and weaken the enamel of our teeth. This is something we don’t want because the enamel of our teeth is the hard, protective coating. When enamel breaks down, teeth are left unprotected, making it easier for cavities to develop. We need to brush and floss every day to remove plaque. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that tooth decay is the most preventable chronic disease in children. Toddler tooth decay should be on every parents radar because 42% of children ages 2 to 11 develop a cavity in their primary teeth according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.

Where Can Cavities Form on Teeth?

1. Biting surface of teeth. The grooves and crevices on the top of our teeth can trap plaque and are more prone to decay in children because they haven’t mastered brushing techniques yet.
2. Between teeth. The areas between the teeth can be hard to reach and are difficult for toothbrushes to get to. These areas need to be flossed to prevent plaque buildup.
3. On root surfaces of teeth. These areas are more often affected in those who have suffered gum recession or bone loss. This area is also more susceptible in older people. Plaque left on exposed teeth can develop into cavities because the roots of teeth don’t have enamel protection.

Ways to Reverse Tooth Decay & Prevent Dental Cavities

1. Start brushing teeth early. Start rubbing your baby’s gums with gauze early on and when teeth start to appear, you can use a baby toothbrush and water to clean your baby’s teeth. As they get older you can get larger toothbrushes but help them until they are 8 to 10 years old as they don’t have the coordination to do it themselves until then. Start getting in the habit of flossing when your child’s teeth start to touch and monitor them until they have the hang of it.
2. Early dental visits. It’s recommended that your child starts making trips to the dentist when they are a year old. This gets them used to seeing the dentist and the dentist will be able to monitor the growth and development of their teeth.
3. Healthy snacks & drinks. To prevent the bacteria from food and drinks attacking teeth, it’s good to have your children enjoy snacks and drinks with as little sugar as possible.
4. Get enough fluoride. Fluoride is a mineral that will help strengthen the enamel of the teeth and helps make them more resistant to decay. Talk with your dentist to make sure your child is getting enough.
5. Dental sealants. Think of sealants as little protective coats for your teeth. Sealants are clear barriers that are applied to the top of teeth for protection from decay.

Pediatric Dentistry

Scheduling regular visits to the dentist throughout your child’s life is very important in preventing dental problems. Contact Smile Reef to make appointment to have their teeth examined today!

dental cavity blog

Amazing, Strange & Interesting Facts about Animal Teeth; Sharks Have Many Rows Of Teeth!

Smile Reef

There are many wonderful and mysterious things to be learned about the animal kingdom, such as the transformation of a caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly, or a lizard which changes color to blend with the environment to avoid its prey. Animals are both unique and fascinating and while you may not immediately think of their teeth as being particularly interesting, you may be surprised to learn these fun and educational facts about animal teeth.

Strange, Amazing & Interesting Facts about Animal Teeth

Types of Shark Teeth: Sharks have a lot of teeth. In fact sharks can have as many as 20,000 teeth during their lifespan. Shark teeth are positioned in rows which move forward as the new teeth push the old ones out. Sharks lose at least one tooth per week, which in human terms means we would be completely toothless in 32 weeks!
Giraffe Teeth Structure: Giraffes and humans have something in common, both species have 32 teeth! Giraffes differ in that they have no upper front teeth, just molars in the back of their mouths which are sued to chew and grind leaves.
Elephant Teeth: Did you known that elephant tusks are actually extra-long incisors that just never stop growing.
Crocodile Species Teeth: Crocodiles can have as many as 60 teeth at any given time with the ability to generate 2000 teeth during their lifetime. Crocodiles just like sharks are known to lose at least one tooth per week.
Venomous Snake Teeth Facts: Snakes have two hollow teeth called fangs to inject venom into its prey. When a snake breaks a fang, another will grow back in its place.
Open Rooted Teeth of Rabbits & Squirrels: Rabbits and squirrels have teeth that never stop growing. To combat the extra growth and keep it under control they chew on wood, nuts, and bark.
How Many Teeth Does a Mosquito Have?: Did you know that a mosquito has 47 teeth? They are so tiny that they cannot be seen without the assistance of a powerful magnifying glass.
Dolphin Teeth: Dolphins have 200 teeth, which is more teeth than any other animal on earth. You can also accurately tell the age of a dolphin by the rings on their teeth, the same way that you would age a tree.
Marine Snails Teeth Are Stronger than Diamond: As amazing as it sounds, snails have an astounding 25,000 microscopic teeth on their tongues

Humans, Cats & Dogs Are Diphydont Meaning We Have Two Sets of Teeth

Humans and other mammals including cats and dogs are the only species who receive two sets of teeth – baby teeth and adult teeth. If you lose your adult teeth you won’t have the luxury of growing an extra set of replacements. Protect your teeth and your child’s teeth by practicing good dental hygiene and scheduling regular checkups for your child with your Smile Reef Dental Professional.

Take Proper Care of Your Child’s Teeth!

The knowledgeable dental experts at Smile Reef specialize in children dentistry by providing a calming and relaxing atmosphere while diagnosing and addressing some of the most common dental issues found in children. By evaluating your child‘s smile we can provide a professional treatment plan that includes improved oral health and hygiene. Contact the professionals at Smile Reef today to learn more about our comprehensive list of children’s dentistry services.

crocodile teeth blog