Most of us have been there before. We brush and floss twice a day, every day. We attend a cleaning and checkup appointment every six months.
We follow all of the directions the dentist gives us to keep our mouth healthy and clean. Then, we get in the chair at the office, open our mouth with pride for examination, and wait to hear the doctor tell us how wonderful our teeth look.
And we wait. And we wait. And we watch the dentist furrow his brow in concern, as he tells us we have cavities. How could this happen? Well, it turns out that brushing and flossing alone may not be enough to completely prevent cavities from forming. Dr. David Eshom knows this, and has started offering our patients an exciting new product called Carifree.
To learn more about the benefits of Carifree, or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Eshom, call our San Diego, CA dental office today at (858) 455-9151.
Some Facts About Cavities
Cavities result from a bacterial infection called dental caries. Every one of us has a biofilm on our teeth that houses various types of bacteria. When kept in balance, these bacteria will not cause any problems. When the population of bacteria become unbalanced, and the acidic bacteria outnumber beneficial bacteria, the dental caries infection occurs.
The infection, which patients can pass to others, eventually produces enough acidic bacteria to eat through the enamel of the teeth and cause cavities. When the doctor fills a cavity, he treats the symptom, but the disease still remains.
Patients who have a caries infection will continue to have more cavities form, sometimes in teeth that have already received fillings. This will continue until you get rid of the disease itself. With Carifree, Dr. Eshom can do exactly that.
What is Carifree?
Carifree allows dentists to screen for and treat bacterial infections on their patients’ teeth before they can cause tooth decay. The Carifree program consist of a testing system that helps the doctor assess the level of harmful bacteria in your mouth.
The program also offers two different rinses: a treatment rinse and a maintenance rinse. Patients can also purchase Carifree gels that replace the need for toothpaste and help keep the teeth free of harmful bacteria. The Carifree program allows Dr. Eshom to fight cavities before they begin, rather than filling them.
The Carifree screening test, a simple chair side procedure, takes about one minute to perform. Dr. Eshom simply takes a swab sample of the plaque on the patient’s teeth. He then combines the sample with a bioluminescent agent to create a chemical reaction. The doctor measures the reaction and assigns it a score between 0 and 9,999.
If the patient has a score under 1,500, the doctor considers them healthy, but a score above that number means the patient has a risk for developing decay. The higher the score, the greater the risk of developing dental caries. The benefit of this system, though, is that it allows Dr. Eshom to test for the possibility of future infection and treat it before it becomes a bigger problem. The doctor can also use this test to assess the progress of his patients’ treatment program.
The Carifree Treatment Program
If Dr. Eshom performs the Carifree screening test, and finds that you have a high risk of developing dental caries, he will recommend the Carifree treatment rinse.
The rinse comes in two parts. After brushing your teeth, you will combine one part of rinse A with one part of rinse B and swish the rinse around between your teeth for one minute, before spitting it out.
The antibacterial rinse contains fluoride and xylitol to fight bacteria that cause cavities, and has a high pH level to offset the acidic properties of the infection. You will use the rinse until the bacteria falls to a healthy level, then switch over to a maintenance rinse.
The maintenance rinse contains the same ingredients without the antibacterial component. The rinse keeps harmful bacteria from re-establishing themselves in your teeth and promotes a healthy environment for beneficial bacteria.
Patients can order other products from Carifree through their website. The company produces a gel, which serves as a replacement for toothpaste, in three different strengths to help fight bacteria. Carifree spray helps to neutralize acids and relieve dry mouth. The Carifree varnish works as a topical fluoride treatment, and the company produces a gum for relieving dry mouth and bad breath.