Brush-Free Cavity Combat

You wake up late. You’re not any­where near your tooth­brush. You just plain for­got to brush your teeth. Now, the bac­te­ria in your mouth are throw­ing a huge limbo party in your mouth, pro­duc­ing acid that eats away at the enamel on your teeth.

Think there’s noth­ing you can do with­out your tooth­brush in hand? Think again! There are a num­ber of things you can do to keep fight­ing cav­ity, even when you can’t brush. You’ve heard of brush­less car washes? Well, try a cou­ple of these ideas and you’ll help turn your mouth into a brush­less cavity-fighting machine!

  • Limit your intake of sug­ary or starchy foods. Sub­stances in starchy, sug­ary foods help pro­mote the pro­duc­tion of acid in your mouth. How­ever, it’s not the amount that you con­sume, rather the dura­tion that you expose your teeth to sug­ary sweets that causes issues. By cut­ting back on how long you spend ingest­ing sweets, be they sug­ary drinks or junk food, you can limit how long the acid has to attack your teeth.
  • Drink plenty of water. Water helps to neu­tral­ize the effects of acidic and sug­ary foods. Flu­o­ri­dated tap water also helps replace min­er­als lost to decay and can even help repair dam­age to teeth.
  • Chew sug­ar­less gum. Gum that con­tains xyl­i­tol helps slow bac­te­ria growth.
  • Eat plenty of crunchy veg­eta­bles and fruits. They help pro­duce saliva, which inter­feres with cavity-causing microbes. It also helps to remove stuck food par­ti­cles, mas­sages your gums, and cleans between teeth.
  • Snack on raisins. While raisins may be sweet and sticky, they con­tain antimi­cro­bial prop­er­ties can inhibit bad bac­te­ria in your mouth.
  • Use an antimi­cro­bial rinse that has been proven to reduce plaque. Keep a small bot­tle in your desk, purse or brief­case so you can swish your mouth clean when you’re not at home.

It should go with­out say­ing, but even tak­ing all these actions together shouldn’t replace brush­ing your teeth twice a day. But together with a healthy brush­ing reg­i­men, these sug­ges­tions should help you have a mouth­ful of happy healthy teeth.