LIBERTY cares about more than just teeth!  
help tip: How to Prevent Tooth Decay  
Good oral hygiene can help you avoid tooth decay.  
Below are some tips to help prevent tooth decay.  
Brush with the type of toothpaste your dentist  
recommends after eating or drinking. Brush your  
teeth at least twice a day and ideally after every meal.  
Floss your teeth every day. Ask your dentist for help  
and instructions on how to floss your teeth effectively.  
The purpose of flossing is to remove the bacteria from  
between your teeth (where a toothbrush can’t reach)  
every 24 hours, so that they can’t stick (plaque) to the  
teeth and cause decay.  
Rinse your mouth. If your dentist feels you have a  
high risk of developing tooth decay, he or she may  
recommend that you use a mouth rinse with fluoride.  
Visit your dentist regularly. Get professional teeth  
cleanings and regular oral exams, which can help  
prevent problems or spot them early. Your dentist  
can recommend a schedule that’s best for you.  
You can prevent  
cavities and  
Consider dental sealants. Dental sealants are a thin,  
plastic coating applied to the chewing surface of back  
teeth. Sealants fill the deep grooves that tend to collect  
food and the bacteria that cause tooth decay. The sealant  
protects tooth enamel from plaque and acid. The Centers  
for Disease Control and Prevention recommends sealants  
for all school-age children. Research shows that sealants not  
only protect teeth, but can also stop decay in the beginning  
stages, preventing future cavities.  
tooth decay  
Drink more water. Drink water after meals and snacks, in  
addition to brushing twice a day and flossing every day.  
Avoid sugary snacks and drinks. Whenever you eat  
sugary foods or drink beverages other than water, you help  
the bacteria in your mouth create acids that can destroy  
your tooth enamel. If you snack or drink throughout the  
day, your teeth are under constant attack.  
Eat nutritious and balanced meals. Avoid foods  
that get stuck in grooves and pits of your teeth for long  
periods, such as candy or cookies, or brush and floss soon  
after eating them. However, foods such as fresh fruits and  
vegetables increase saliva flow, which often helps balance  
out the acidity of the bacteria. In addition, sugar-free gum  
and unsweetened drinks, including coffee and tea can help  
wash away food particles.  
Making members shine, one smile at a time  
2016 LIBERTY Dental Plan How-to-Prevent-Tooth-Decay-English RN 05 2016