You may not be aware, but there are billions of bacteria living inside your mouth, and while some of them are beneficial, others can cause tooth decay and gum disease. This is why brushing and flossing regularly and using mouthwash is important because it helps prevent bacteria from building up in your mouth. Dr. Joseph DuRoss is a dentist who helps Long Beach, CA residents maintain a good oral care routine.
What Causes Tooth Decay?
Some of the bacteria in your mouth feed on sugars in the food and beverages you consume. As they digest the sugars, they produce waste material called plaque. Plaque clings to the surface of your teeth, producing acids that erode the teeth and eventually causing decay and cavities. Plaque can also build up around the gum line and cause gingivitis – the first stage of gum disease. Left untreated, gingivitis develops into periodontitis – a severe form of gum disease. Signs of gingivitis include:
- Bright red, swollen gums
- Sensitivity of teeth and gums
- Bleeding gums
- Persistent bad breath
How to Prevent Tooth Decay
The easiest way to avoid decay is to brush your teeth twice each day and floss daily. Spending two minutes in the morning and evening brushing with a soft-bristled brush removes plaque from your teeth. Daily flossing helps prevent plaque from building up between the teeth. Choosing a fluoride toothpaste can also protect your teeth from cavities. Using a dentist-recommended mouthwash can give you further protection against tooth decay and gum disease.
How Your Long Beach Dentist Can Help
Maintaining good at-home oral hygiene habits are important, but your dentist can also help you prevent tooth decay and gum disease. By having a dental check-up at least twice each year, you can make sure that if you do start to show signs of tooth decay or gum disease, that your dentist can treat it immediately before it gets out of hand.
If you’re looking for a Long Beach, CA dentist, call Dr. DuRoss on (562) 424-8537.