It's not always easy to figure out what is causing decay, but we've got some tips for you which could help stop that next filling!


  1. Use a fluoride toothpaste with at least 1450ppm (parts per million) for adults and 1000ppm for children.
  2. Spit don’t rinse after brushing. If you rinse with water afterwards, you will rinse away the fluoride which acts topically on your teeth.
  3. Keep sugary snacks and drinks to mealtimes only. When it comes to decay it is the frequency NOT the amount of sugar you have.
  4. Water, milk, and Tea/coffee (without sugar) are safe drinks to have between meals.
  5. Don’t have anything sugary to eat or drink within an hour bedtime. Saliva neutralises sugar in your mouth, and this reduces at night so for some people the sugar can stay in the mouth all night.
  6. “Reduced” sugar does not mean sugar free.
  7. “Natural” sugars such as honey, are still sugar and are still bad for your teeth.
  8. Dried fruit and fruit bars are not a healthy snack, for example weight for weight there is more sugar in Raisins than Jelly Babies.
  9. If you are going to have something sugary it is best to eat it all in one go, little and often or grazing will cause decay.
  10. Food labelling can be very confusing, but two tops tips are anything that ends in an “ose” is a sugar and food manufacturers will often separate the sugars into different ones rather than just saying sugar. The second tip is the ingredients need to be listed in the highest amount, so if any sugars are near the beginning, you can be confident that there is a lot of sugar in the food or drink.