Halloween is just a few short days away! Which means before you know it, your kids will be donning costumes and going around trick or treating. While this holiday is fun, when kids and adults consume too much candy this could mean the onset of a painful cavity. Fortunately, your Des Moines, IA, dentist has a few tips to help protect your smile!
Cavities and Candy
Candy, especially chewy and sticky ones, will leave behind sugar particles trapped between the teeth or adhering to the surfaces. Over time, bacteria will begin to feed on these particles in a process that elevates oral acidity and coats the teeth in a sticky bacterial byproduct known as plaque. The plaque buildup then begins to weaken tooth enamel, eventually eroding this protective outer layer and allowing bacteria to gain access to the sensitive tooth structure within. A cavity then forms. As the decay continues to grow and spread, you may encounter tooth sensitivity to hot or cold foods and drinks, and potentially a toothache that doesn’t subside, but grows more severe with time. Treatment is crucial for preventing a painful infection, or even losing the tooth entirely!
Protecting Your Smile
To avoid cavities this Halloween, be sure to limit how much candy you consume each day. Better yet, eat them right after dinner and follow them up with a glass of water to help cleanse the mouth. Be sure you’re brushing your teeth when you wake up for two minutes using a toothpaste that contains fluoride, and brushing them again before going to bed. You also need to start flossing before bed, moving the floss tape up and down the length of each side of every tooth. Be sure to see us every six months for checkup and cleaning as well. The checkup allows us to watch for warning signs of decay, and the cleaning removes all plaque buildup to protect the outer enamel. To help kids in your neighborhood this year, consider handing out candy alternatives such as temporary tattoos, stickers, small crayon packages, or Halloween-related party favors!
If you do begin to encounter a toothache, let us know right away. We will examine your tooth and if we find decay, we can often treat the issue in one visit. A filling involves removing decay and placing a lifelike and metal-free material to repair the tooth. In one sitting, you leave with a bright and healthy tooth! If you have any further questions, then please contact our team today.
Schedule a Checkup Today!
We want to help you and your loved ones enjoy optimal oral health with routine preventive care. To learn more about safeguarding your smile’s beauty, schedule a consultation with Dr. Burds by calling Gateway Dental Group in downtown Des Moines, IA, at (515) 244-9565.