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How to Prevent Cavities

Simple steps to stop acids from damaging your tooth enamel will help you prevent cavities over time.

family brushing teeth in front of mirror

A cavity is a tiny hole in your tooth. Cavities form over time after acids damage your tooth enamel. The acids form in your mouth when oral plaque combines with ingredients from food or drinks.

The good news is that you can prevent cavities using these tips:

  • Give your teeth the brushing they deserve. Brush with fluoride toothpaste twice a day for two minutes (one minute for top teeth and one minute for bottom teeth). Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush each tooth in a small, circular motion. Always brush after eating sugary or starchy foods. Replace your toothbrush every three to four months or when the bristles begin to wear down.

  • Floss daily. Dental floss reaches where your toothbrush can’t. It removes plaque and food that's stuck between your teeth. Flossing also helps to keep your gums healthy.

  • Enjoy good nutrition. Drink plenty of water, especially fluoridated tap water. The American Dental Association advises eating a balanced diet that includes fruit, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and low-fat and fat-free dairy.

  • Visit your dentist twice a year. See your dentist every six months for an oral exam and cleaning. This helps to prevent cavities or catch them early.

  • Ask about fluoride. Fluoride makes tooth enamel strong so it can resist decay. It can even help to reverse early stages of decay. Your dentist may treat your teeth with a fluoride coating or prescribe fluoride supplements. Children can benefit from tooth sealants from the dentist. The process is quick, easy and painless.
Preventistry Pulse


The newsletter designed for anyone who wants to improve oral health for themselves, their families, customers or communities.