Tooth decay occurs when acids in the mouth dissolve the outer layer of the tooth.
It is a common problem, with one in three adults affected – although rates of tooth decay among adults is falling.
However, recent surveys have revealed tooth decay levels in young children in the UK are shockingly high.
Nearly half of eight-year-olds, a third of five-year-olds, and 12% of three-year-olds are thought to have tooth decay.
But it takes just two minutes for most of us to prevent tooth decay. Or, at least, two minutes twice a day.
Good brushing and clean teeth will prevent most tooth decay, and dentists advise that you brush your teeth for at least two minutes twice each day. Once before bed and once at another time during the day.
Two minutes should be enough time to ensure you brush all the surfaces – inner, outer and chewing surface. Because so many young children are not achieving adequate levels of brushing, parents should supervise their children’s brushing.
Floss or use an interdental brush to make sure you remove all plaque at the gumline and between teeth. Brushing your tongue or using a tongue scrape will get rid of more bacteria.
Anti-plaque mouthwashes may also help, but use these at a different time to brushing to spread and maximise the effect.
And with the UK gearing up for National Smile Month, which starts on May 18, 2015, there really is no better time to start giving your teeth a little extra attention.
Smile Month aims to spread three very simple dental health messages to help improve oral hygiene –
- Brush teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day with a fluoride toothpaste
- Cut down sugary food and drink
- Visit your dentist regularly
We can help you with the last point, as we are offering FREE dental examinations. To book yours, simply call our friendly reception team on 966 860 258, or fill in the form to the right and tick Dental examination.