The following are natural methods for preventing cavities:
1. Increase saliva production in your mouth after every meal. After a meal, especially one containing simple sugars, acid levels in the mouth increase. This is because bacteria decompose the sugars and produce acid. The presence of this acid is what causes tooth decay. Saliva protects the teeth by acting as a buffer and neutralising the acids.
2. Decrease the frequency of consumption of sugary foods. Every time your mouth is exposed to sugary meals or snacks, it plunges the oral environment into an acidic environment. This predisposes the teeth to the development of tooth decay. Although the saliva can neutralise acid, it takes time. If you keep exposing the mouth to sugars, it keeps decreasing the pH and the saliva isn't given enough time to neutralise the acids.
3. Avoid eating foods containing sticky sugars, e.g. toffees. These stick to the teeth and prolong the mouth's exposure to acid. As long as sugar is present in the mouth, the bacteria will continue to break it down to form acid, and this acid causes tooth decay.
4. Rinsing your mouth out after every meal, or brushing your teeth to remove excess food debris can also help to protect the teeth against the acid attack.
5. Early tooth decay appears as white spots and are basically demineralised areas on the teeth. If demineralisation is allowed to continue, it will eventually progress to a cavity. These initial lesions, or white spots, can be reversed by applying fluoride to the teeth which help to remineralise the teeth and prevent a cavity from forming.
6. Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that has been used as a sugar-free alternative. It has also been found to be beneficial for reversing early tooth decay. Xylitol toothpastes and gum are also effective in preventing tooth cavities from forming. Xylitol gum has a double effect because chewing gum increases the production of saliva and the presence of xylitol is a natural cavities inhibitor.