Preventing Tooth Decay To Maintain Healthy Teeth

Discover How Xylitol Could Help You Prevent Tooth Decay

Among both children and adults, the most common dental problem is tooth decay. Unfortunately, tooth decay often results in tooth loss, resulting in the need for dentures or implants later in life. Although fluoride is often used in dental products and many water supplies, tooth decay continues to be the top dental problem within the United States. While fluoride helps patch up damage from acid attacks, xylitol may offer a better option, eliminating acid attacks before they can damage teeth. Here's a closer look at xylitol and how it can help you prevent tooth decay.

Xylitol – What is It?

Xylitol, an all-natural sweetener, is made from plants, such as fibrous fruits, fibrous veggies, corn cobs, and hardwood trees. This sweetener breaks down differently than sugar, and while it tastes just like sucrose, it's significantly lower in calories and carbohydrates. Xylitol is found in many sugar-free products designed for diabetics, since it offers sweetness without the negative effects of sugar.

The Exciting Oral Health Benefits of Xylitol

Research shows that xylitol offers many excellent oral health benefits. Several of the most exciting oral health benefits of xylitol include:

  • Benefit #1 – Lowers the Amount of Bacteria Within the Mouth – Bacteria are responsible for creating acids that eat away at tooth enamel. When you eat sugar, bacteria feed on the sugars and begin to multiply. However, bacteria cannot digest xylitol, lowering the amount of acid-producing bacteria within the mouth, which reduces the risk of tooth decay.
  • Benefit #2 – Restores pH and Neutralizes Acids – When you eat or drink acidic items, those acids can soften enamel, create white spot lesions, and cause tooth decay. However, xylitol restores the pH and neutralizes the acids. Xylitol also stimulates saliva production, which helps to neutralize acids and improve overall oral health.
  • Benefit #3 – Repairs Damaged Tooth Enamel – Xylitol repairs damaged enamel by enhancing the reintegration of essential minerals into damaged or weakened tooth enamel. Not only does this help to prevent future cavities, it also helps keep current cavities from growing.

Discuss Xylitol with Your Dentist

Xylitol is found in many veggies and fruits naturally, but you're probably not eating enough of these foods to reap the oral health benefits of xylitol. It's much cheaper to prevent tooth decay than it is to treat it, so consider discussing xylitol with your dentist. Your dentist may recommend products containing xylitol, such as gum, hard candies, or toothpaste. Since xylitol is a natural way to prevent tooth decay, it's an appealing way to prevent cavities while promoting good overall oral health. To learn more, speak with someone like Olympia Dental and Implant Center.