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trajectory of dental health

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OmegaNebula

Junior member
Joined
Jan 26, 2017
Messages
3
Here's a question that anybody old enough can answer...

I'm in my late 20s. My teeth are OK for now, I guess. Only one root canal and no missing teeth. However, most of my teeth have at least one filling, and all of my molars have multiple fillings. No matter how good I am at bushing, more often then not, the same teeth have to get drilled again and again. None of my fillings are shallow anymore, and almost all are down to the pulp. I don't see how I can continue for much longer without all of these teeth needing root-canal treatment in the (relatively near) future.

What happens next? Am I doomed to have lost all these teeth by the time I'm twice my age? No matter what gets fixed, it seems there's always some problem with my mouth, and the rate of downward slide just seems unsustainable.
 
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drm

Well-known member
Verified dentist
Joined
Sep 3, 2016
Messages
293
Location
United States
You've got to figure out what is causing all the cavities and make a lifestyle change. For most people there is a very significant dietary component to cavities. Even if you're highly prone to decay, getting consistent sugar and acid out of your diet will make it so you rarely develop cavities. Good oral hygiene just isn't enough if you don't make the necessary diet changes. I'd also recommend supplemental fluoride in the form of a prescription toothpaste (something like Prevident 5000 or Clinpro 5000). Your dentist can give you a prescription for these types of toothpastes.

If something doesn't change, yes you'll likely end up with a significant number of root canals, crowns, and eventually tooth loss. If you can make these changes and get it under control, you'll significantly extend the life of all of your teeth. I've seen people with extremely large fillings placed early in life that have lasted decades because they took good care of them.

If you'd like to read about even more specific things you can do to decrease your risk of decay, gum disease, and other oral health problems you can check out an article I wrote a while back... Dental Health Tips. It's got a lot of additional tips and information that I can't possibly get into in enough depth here.
 
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OmegaNebula

Junior member
Joined
Jan 26, 2017
Messages
3
Over the last 4+ or so years, I've oriented more and more of my lifestyle around dental health. I have mimimized sugar (and refined carbohydrates) in my diet as much as possible. I always bush at least twice a day and I floss more than once per day. (When I brush and floss I do it gently, as recommended.) I gargle with water after every meal. And, I gargle with non-alcoholic mouth wash just before bed. I get cleanings at the dentist twice a year and get cavities taken care of promptly. I've looked up the effects of foods like coffee (black) to see what the current recommendations are. My water has fluoride, and so does my toothpaste (although not prescription).

I just don't know what else is possible to do!
 
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drm

Well-known member
Verified dentist
Joined
Sep 3, 2016
Messages
293
Location
United States
I'd definitely check into the prescription strength fluoride toothpaste. Using regular 1000 part per million (ppm) toothpaste gives you about a 23% reduction in cavities while prescription 5000 ppm tooth gives you about a 42% reduction.

I'd also start chewing xylitol gum all throughout the day. Chewing any type of sugarless gum is protective against cavities because it stimulates your saliva flow. Xylitol gum is even more effective because it keeps the bacteria from attaching to your teeth as well. You want to shoot for about 5-10 grams of xylitol throughout the day. Studies estimate you get another 40-80% reduction in cavities when you do this.

You really can't find good xylitol gum or candy in stores yet. Most of the time you have to order it online. I personally like the Epic, Spry, or Xyloburst brands.

Avoid eating all throughout the day. Try to consolidate all eating into three specific mealtimes and one quick snack time. Don't eat at any other times of the day. Cavity development is all about how often your teeth are exposed to sugars/acid as opposed to how much total they are exposed to.
 
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explosionsinthesky

Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2017
Messages
30
Hi there,

just throwing my experience out there in case it helps and your case sounds quite similar to mine.
I'm slightly older (38) but up until I was 27 each time I went to the dentist she would drill another in my teeth saying there's been decay. I didn't know a lot about dental hygiene so I thought brushing and going to the dentist would be enough and that my teeth are just crap. Anyway, to cut the long story short, at 27 it turns out that it wasn't enough as she was never scaling my teeth so I ended up with advanced gingivitis, and I started questioning her drilling policy so I've changed the dentist and things improved massively for me.

Basically, in the 10 years since I only had two fillings done (both hers that fell apart, one crowned as there was hardly any teeth left, and one rct with crown, just doing it). I do gets bit of tooth decay but the dentist is just monitoring them as opposed to going in with the drill and hygiene is stopping them expanding or they do it really slowly which is less of a damage than drilling and re-drilling. So I would really suggest looking into second opinion as it might be better in the long run.
 
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Anonymous222

Junior member
Joined
Jan 2, 2017
Messages
12
You could have a hereditary gene, that comes from one side of your family. I know that my great grandmother had very horrible teeth. No matter how much she took care of them her teeth still got very bad. My grandpa, used to take care of his teeth very well as well and still had them fall out or still needed some of them extracted. My aunt started having issues with her teeth and made an appointment to have them all extracted at the same time it was happening. My mom as well. Sometimes, even if you take care of your teeth, it could just be hereditary that your teeth just aren't as strong as other people's. I don't only have this on my mom's side, but my dad's as well.
 
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