Tooth enamel is one of the strongest and most durable substances found in the human body. However, despite being harder than bone, the enamel is susceptible to weakening when exposed to variables like sugary foods and drinks.
If you're struggling with worn dental enamel, you're likely searching for a way to rebuild and restrengthen your teeth. These tips and tricks will keep your teeth strong while restoring their health.
Why You're Experiencing Enamel Erosion
Enamel erosion happens when acids wear away the enamel on your teeth. Friction, wear and tear, and stress in any combination can cause erosion of the tooth surface.
The top factors that destroy tooth enamel are:
- Excessive soft drink consumption
- Fruit juices that have high levels of sugar and citric acids
- Dry mouth and low saliva flow
- A diet high in sugar and starches
- Acid reflux disease
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Side effects of certain medications
- Grinding of your teeth, or Bruxism
- Improper flossing
- Brushing too hard
How Restoring Enamel Can Transform Your Teeth
While there's no way to fully "restore" lost tooth enamel, there are ways you can treat the damaged area and take care of your teeth in other ways to prevent further damage.
Bonding can be used in milder cases of enamel erosion. In this cosmetic procedure, a resin tinted to match your existing teeth is applied to the tooth with the erosion. Once the resin hardens, it is "bonded" to your tooth and then trimmed and polished to fit into your mouth. The entire process takes an hour or less, and the bonding usually takes just one appointment to achieve desired results for stronger, healthier teeth.
A crown can be applied to a tooth in more severe cases of weakened enamel. This procedure involves capping the tooth with excessive damage with a crown to protect the damaged areas, restoring function to a damaged tooth. Crowns protect your tooth against future decay and allow you to eat and drink again without experiencing chronic sensitivity and pain.
Long-Term Benefits of Treating Enamel Erosion
Several adverse side effects from tooth erosion can lead to discomfort, with the most common being sensitive and discolored teeth, increased decay, tooth fracturing, and shiny spots on teeth. Most patients don't realize how beneficial it is to restore their enamel in one quick dental appointment.
Having your erosion corrected will give you the benefits of:
- Reduced Tooth Sensitivity - The most common side effect of teeth erosion is tooth sensitivity. This is caused by reducing the tooth's protective coating, and your teeth may be sensitive to eating hot or cold foods when you brush or when your gum line is exposed to air.
- A Whiter Smile - Enamel erosion often results in what appears to be discoloration. In reality, the enamel has worn so thin you see the underlying dentine of your teeth which is naturally yellow.
- Smoothed Edges - Rough edges appear when your enamel wears away, which can make for an uncomfortable surface that your tongue brushes against and can eventually lead to chipped or cracked teeth.
- The Return of Daily Comfort - Regain the functionality of your teeth with strong surfaces that don't feel brittle.
- A Reduced Likelihood of Further Dental Issues - Dental bonding or crowns aren't susceptible to tooth decay because neither substance is natural enamel, creating a barrier layer on your teeth.
Prevent Potential TMJ Problems
Your jaw operates best when your teeth are correctly aligned. If your enamel has become severely worn, your upper and lower teeth will not fit together correctly. Long-term misalignment can lead to more serious concerns, including jaw disorders. Having enamel erosion corrected with dental bonding helps realign your teeth and reduces the risk of your body over-correcting your bite, causing you to develop TMJ.
Do Your Part To Prevent Future Enamel Erosion
The best defense against tooth erosion is a good offense, which means being proactive with your oral hygiene routine. Incorporating these tricks into your daily routine will help prevent tooth erosion in the future and give your teeth an extra level of protection against other types of damage.
- Eliminate sugary drinks
- Use a straw for liquids when possible
- Cut back on frequent snacking
- Rinse your mouth after eating
- Stay hydrated by drinking water
Schedule regular dental checkups and cleanings every six months to keep your teeth healthy and catch issues while they're still minor. If it's been longer than six months since your last exam, contact Elite Dental & Denture PC to schedule an appointment.