Cavities, or dental caries, are common across the world. Cavities can be painful, and often lead to further problems if left untreated. We have provided a few ways in which you can help prevent your child from developing cavities. For more information about cavity prevention in Milpitas, California, and to set up your child’s appointment with Dr. Maung Maung Ryan Thaw, please contact Dixon Landing Family Dental Care today at 408-942-7791 .

What Causes Cavities

There are two main causes of tooth decay: sugary diets and poor oral hygiene. Cavities form when the teeth are exposed to sugary food regularly. The sugars and carbohydrates collect on and around the teeth after eating, and develop into plaque. The bacteria in the plaque feed on the sugar and emit acids which eat away at tooth enamel and cause decay.

How can you tell if your child has a cavity?

Cavities can sometimes be difficult to detect – tiny cavities may not be felt at all, while larger cavities can be extremely painful. The best way to detect a cavity is to visit the dentist – dental X-rays as well as the dentist’s professionally-trained eyes will be able to pinpoint even the tiniest of cavities, so that your child can receive prompt treatment.

Common symptoms of cavities include:

  • Heightened sensitivity to heat and cold
  • Pain
  • Toothaches
  • Nighttime waking and crying
  • Sensitivity to spicy foods

How to Prevent Cavities

The best way to help your child avoid cavities is to ensure that they eat a balanced diet, practice good oral hygiene at home, and visit the dentist regularly, at least twice a year. Here are a few useful tips:

  • Help your child maintain a healthy, nutritious diet.
  • Reduce snacking, and remove sugary and starchy snacks from their diet.
  • Do not allow your child to use a sippy cup.
  • Avoid sticky foods and treats.
  • Clean pacifiers, teething rings and baby bottle tops with running water, not with your own mouth.
  • Do not send your child to bed with a sippy cup or bottle. If they insist on having a bottle with them, fill it only with water.
  • Do not sweeten your child’s pacifier.
  • Brush and floss your child’s teeth for them until they are about 7 years old.
  • Have our dentist check your child’s fluoride levels, and provide a fluoride treatment if necessary.
  • Keep all regular dental appointments. Children should meet with the dentist for the first time around their first birthday.

We invite you to contact our office if you have any questions about cavity prevention. Our caring dentist and team will be happy to provide you with more information and help you make an appointment for your child at our dental office.