Young adults in the 21st century should not have a lot tooth decay. We know what causes tooth decay and we know how to prevent it. So in the world today when young adults have tooth decay we tend to respond with a simple but aggressive and proven approach to stopping disease.
- Diet - the main culprit is sugar but other refined carbohydrates like we find in breads and pastas can also be a problem. Sugars and other types of carbs are consumed by some bacteria and acids are the waste product. The acid dissolves the calcium from the teeth. timing can also be important as people who eat three healthy meals per day do not have same problems as people who snack on high carb high sugar snacks including energy drinks and fruit juices. Young adults who have a diet heavy in sugar and carbs can have twice the acid levels throughout the day (the acid levels stay high all day with no recovery period in between).
- Oral Hygiene - good home health care keeps the total number of bacteria in check. The less bacteria in residence in your mouth the less the amount of acid produced. The more sugar there is the more acid producing bacteria thrive and take over. Our hygienists play an important roll in resetting this mix of bacteria. when you have your teeth cleaned professionally you remove the acid producing bacteria and plaque and it will take awhile for them to reestablish.
When young adults find that they have a concern about or problem with tooth decay there is a well proven way to tackle this problem and bring it under control.
- Diet - first we must understand that refined carbohydrates and high sugar foods in the diet are the main problem.Study labels find the carbs and sugars and reduce them as much as possible. Secondly but just as important is when you consume these types of foods make sure to brush afterwards. Try to brush after every meal and keep away from this type of high carb high sugar snacks in between when possible.
- Oral Hygiene - it is important to understand that in order to get this problem stabilized again it necessary to get rid of the bad bacteria that changes sugars into acids. This in part is done by not giving the as many carbs for the bacteria to feed on. It is also important to adopt a serious hygiene routine for at least a year or two until things get back to normal.
- Brushing and Flossing - Thoroughly 3 - 4 times per day. After every meal is great and using an electric toothbrush will also help.
- Scrape your tongue - with a specialized gadget or an ordinary teaspoon. There is a tremendous amount of bacteria residing on the surface of your tongue.
- Rinse - rinse and gargle with a mouthwash that contains fluoride.
- Hygienists - we need to remove the hard calcified plaque on our teeth as that is where a lot of bacteria will hide. This issue can be taken care of by having a professional cleaning done by a hygienist 3 - 4 times a year until you are comfortable that the problem has been stabilized.
It is worth noting that it is very seldom that health problems occur in isolation. They are generally a part of a bigger picture with tooth decay being no exception to this rule. Strange new eating habits may be associated with increased stress or depression. Patients who seem to have lost interest in their own personal hygiene and a lack of care for their general health and wellbeing could be suffering form depression, addictions, or some other more serious disorders. this should be looked at by an appropriate health care professionals or close family members and friends.
Since tooth decay can be the result of a high sugar and refined carbohydrate diet it is also wise to look for disorders which are associated with a high sugar high carb diets such as diabetes, hyperactivity, and increased inflammation such as heart disease, and dementia.