What Tooth Enamel Erosion Is and How To Fix It?
Tooth enamel erosion is a condition in which the outer layer of the tooth is damaged and weakened. If left untreated, the eroded tooth would cause unexpected complications.
Your teeth are covered with a layer of enamel which is like a tough shell. They help protect the teeth from tooth decay as well as many other dental and oral problems, such as tooth enamel erosion or periodontal disease. While this is important, the enamel is really vulnerable.
The following article provides you with all the necessary information about enamel erosion and how to fix it in order to preserve the aesthetic smile and oral health.
What is tooth enamel?
The enamel is the semicircular-shaped outer layer of the tooth and is extremely hard. It covers the outside of the tooth to protect the sensitive dentin inside. Although being considered as the hardest substance in the human body - even stronger than bones, tooth enamel is susceptible to erosion over time due to acids from foods and beverages consumed, especially sweets.
What causes enamel to erode?
Enamel erosion can be caused by:
Eating too much sugary foods
Bacteria in the mouth thrive on sugar in sweet foods, which produce acids that erode tooth enamel.
Acidic foods such as sour fruits or carbonated soft drinks can cause tooth enamel to erode eventually.
Saliva helps prevent tooth decay by washing away bacteria and leftover food in the mouth. Saliva also helps maintain the pH balance in the oral cavity. If your mouth becomes too dry, harmful bacteria will have a chance to grow, causing tooth enamel erosion.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
When you experience GERD or vomiting, the acid from the stomach ends up in the esophagus and oral cavity. This makes a quite great influence on tooth enamel.
It is misleading to think that the harder you brush your teeth, the cleaner and brighter your teeth will be. In fact, this will only cause the enamel to erode faster.
Teeth grinding (bruxism)
Teeth grinding happens unconsciously but it will still affect your dental health in general and tooth enamel in particular.
Does plaque cause enamel erosion?
According to experts, plaque leads to tartar buildup over time. If tartar is not removed, the enamel is likely to be dull or even erode.
Can tooth enamel grow back?
Tooth enamel is tough. However, the enamel does not contain any living cells and cannot recover by itself in case of physical damage.
How to repair tooth enamel effectively
To treat tooth enamel erosion, you may:
- Get teeth fillings in mild cases
- Get porcelain crowns in severe cases
Not only a bright smile gives you confidence, but it also helps you appear more attractive. Thus, repairing tooth enamel erosion should be a priority to ensure aesthetic integrity.
In order to attain that, you should visit a dental clinic with a team of skilled, experienced, and enthusiastic dentists. You will be on to healthy teeth and a bright smile at low cost in no time.
Besides, the dental clinic of your choice should be equipped with modern, state-of-the-art equipment and rigorous aseptic procedures, which helps shorten the treatment process, make it painless and convenient for the patients as well as prevent infection.
How to prevent tooth enamel erosion?
Please find below some brilliant tips to help you prevent tooth enamel erosion and take steps towards a healthier and happier mouth.
Limit intake of carbonated beverages
Though carbonated water is delicious, it is not very friendly with your enamel. Moreover, most carbonated drinks contain quite a lot of sugar, contributing to the production of bacteria that cause tooth decay and tooth enamel erosion. Therefore, you should limit your soft drinks intake. Instead, you should drink more filtered water or try tea, etc.
Make dairy products a priority
Some foods that can help protect your oral health are milk and dairy foods (cheese and yogurt for instance). Eating cheese stimulates saliva production which helps wash away any food debris and acid from the teeth. In addition, cheese is rich in calcium and phosphates. These two minerals can restore the tooth enamel to some degree.
Brush your teeth properly
Brushing your teeth twice a day helps protect dental health. However, brushing too soon after eating - especially acidic foods - may damage the enamel. To prevent enamel loss, avoid brushing your teeth for at least 30 minutes after consuming anything acidic. Furthermore, brush your teeth thoroughly but gently with a soft-bristled brush.
Regularly get dental checkups
Last but not least, one of the best ways to protect your tooth enamel is to see your dentist regularly. The dentist can detect any signs of tooth enamel erosion, give advice on treatments that best suited for your condition so it can be improved.