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When it comes to cavities, there are things you can actively do to protect your smile. Our team at the dental office of Richard Choi, DMD & Ryan Choi, DMD, love helping our patients in San Francisco, California create healthy, beautiful smiles. Today we would like to share our cavity prevention strategy with you. Let’s take a look!

Cavities, or holes in the teeth, are caused by the acids in plaque which dissolve tooth enamel. Plaque is formed when bacteria in the mouth mixes with food particles from sugars and starches, along with acid and saliva. Plaque sticks to your teeth and if it isn’t removed daily, will damage tooth enamel and spread to the dentin and tooth pulp beneath it.

What you can do
Preventing cavities and stopping tooth decay involves daily oral care. First, brush your pearly whites at least twice a day using a fluoridated toothpaste to strengthen enamel. Next, floss your teeth along the gumline and between each tooth. Using a flossing method you enjoy will help you floss at least once a day. If you are cavity prone, you can also rinse your mouth after cleaning with a fluoridated or antibacterial mouthwash to prevent plaque.

Believe it or not, a healthy diet benefits your smile along with your body. Reducing sugar and starch exposure means sticking to balanced meals and avoiding candy and chips and other snacks which can stick to your teeth and feed bacteria in the mouth.

And finally, routine dental checkups and cleanings will remove hardened plaque deposits from enamel and allow us to detect problems early. We may also suggest dental sealants on your molars and fluoride treatments to strengthen tooth enamel. Drinking tap water which has fluoride added to it is also good for teeth.

We hope you will keep your smile healthy in San Francisco, California, by practicing these oral habits. If you have any questions about your oral health, please give us a call at 415-986-1491. Dr. Richard Choi and his son, Dr. Ryan Choi, look forward to helping you achieve a lifetime of healthy smiles!

Check out this article in KQED News about cavities featuring Dr. Choi: Fighting Children’s Cavities in Chinatown: It Takes a Coalition