If you’re like most people, you want to keep your teeth for as long as you can. Hopefully, this also means you follow a great dental care routine that includes twice daily brushing, daily flossing, and regular visits to your dentist. Want to know what else you can do to help keep your teeth healthy and strong? Strengthen your tooth enamel.
The enamel on your teeth is their first line of defense against erosion and decay. So the better care you take of your tooth enamel, the stronger it will be, and the better it can protect your teeth.
Take a look at these tips for strengthening your tooth enamel.
Use toothpaste that contains fluoride
Fluoride works on two fronts. One, it helps build weakened tooth enamel and reverse signs of early decay. And two, it helps protect your teeth from further risk of cavities.
Drink tap water
The tap water in most cities contains fluoride. This is no accident. Public water fluoridation first began as a means of lowering the levels of tooth decay in children. And it works. You won’t get fluoride in most bottled water. (If your city does not have fluoride in the water, you may want to consider fluoride supplements, especially for your children. But talk to your doctor or dentist about this first.)
Avoid sugary and acidic foods
The fermentable carbohydrates found in candy, cookies, soda, crackers, and sugary breakfast cereals lead to the breakdown of your tooth enamel. These foods tend to stick to your teeth and continue to erode your enamel long after you’ve eaten them.
Brush with soft bristles
Overly vigorous brushing with a hard-bristled brush can wreak havoc on your tooth enamel. Spare your enamel and your gums by brushing gently with a soft-bristled brush.
Chew sugar free gum
Chewing gum produces additional saliva in your mouth, and when it’s sugar free gum, it can neutralize and wash away the erosive acids produced by the breakdown of your foods. The saliva also provides additional calcium and other minerals that coat and protect the enamel on your teeth.
If you love cheese, then you’re in luck. Cheese is great for your teeth. Not only does it contain the calcium and protein that strengthen tooth enamel, but also increases saliva in the mouth. That extra saliva along with the extra calcium and protein will help build up your weak enamel and protect your teeth against decay. Whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and lean proteins can also help remineralize your teeth.
Wear a mouth guard if necessary
You may not be aware that you’re clenching and grinding your teeth at night while you sleep, but if you are, it’s having a negative effect on your teeth. The pressure of clenching and grinding may chip or wear away your enamel. It can also crack your teeth. If you wake up in the morning with headaches, facial soreness or a tight jaw, ask your dentist to help you get fitted for a mouth guard to wear while you sleep.
Have questions about the state of your tooth enamel? Come see us!
At Soft Touch Dental in San Diego, we love it when our patients come in with questions about how to increase their dental health. For more information on how your tooth enamel is holding up or tips on how to strengthen it, call to schedule an appointment today!