Dental Tips Blog

Oct
16

Enamel Erosion: Do You Know the Signs?

Posted in Veneers

Enamel wear happens slowly and almost imperceptibly. Yet its consequences are too serious to ignore. Despite tooth enamel being the toughest substance in your body, it can rapidly disappear thanks to a few of your favorite foods.

Some common contributors to worn enamel include:

  • Citrus fruits
  • Juice
  • Soda
  • Sports drinks
  • Sweets
  • Simple carbs (think junk food)
  • Aggressive tooth brushing
  • Teeth grinding habit
  • Stomach acids (frequent vomiting or acid reflux)

Here’s what to look for if you think your enamel might be in danger.

Yellowing Teeth

Darkening teeth are often a sign of staining. But a distinct yellow hue can indicate that the enamel has thinned out to reveal more of the dark dentin. You may notice isolated yellow spots in areas exposed to the heaviest wear.

Increased Sensitivity

As you lose enamel, your teeth lose the insulating layer that protects the nerve chamber. Teeth usually become sensitive after losing some enamel.

Flattened Chewing Surfaces

Teeth typically have a variety of bumps and ridges. But if they take on a squared-off look, that means they’re grinding too much against their opposing neighbors.

Translucent Edges

As enamel thins out, the chewing edges of your front teeth may start to look a little clear or bluish. This enamel is very brittle.

White Spots

Also known as areas of decalcification, white spots are very prone to developing decay since the enamel has lost so much strength there. These chalky patches are not reversible and actually need extra protection against cavities.

Treatment Options

Fortunately, there are various treatment options for treating teeth damaged by tooth enamel erosion including bonding, porcelain veneers and crowns.

Plan a smile consultation with your local dentist to find out what you should do to prevent further loss of tooth enamel and to repair teeth with eroded tooth enamel.

Posted on behalf of:
Atlantic Dental Partners
729 Centre St
Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
(617) 390-8484

Jul
17

What Causes Acid Erosion and How to Fix It

Posted in Veneers

Did you know that your enamel comes under attack on a daily basis?

Your teeth suffer the effects of acid from a variety of sources. Enamel is the hard outermost layer on each tooth. It’s actually the hardest substance in your body. Even so, it’s prone to wear from exposure to acids.

Acids In Your Diet

The most common cause of acid erosion in tooth enamel is simply putting too much acid in your mouth.

Some of your favorite foods could be sources of regular acid exposure for you:

  • Soda
  • Juice
  • Sugar
  • Salad dressing
  • Coffee
  • Wine

Acids In Your Body

Do you suffer from gastro-reflux or another medical condition that causes frequent vomiting?

These issues expose your teeth to acids that should normally stay in your stomach. It’s very common for people with digestive issues to have teeth that are sensitive and look yellow because of enamel loss.

Acids In Your Mouth

Besides acids from your digestive tract, your mouth also gets exposed to acid from the bacteria that live in there. We all carry the germs that cause cavities. These bacteria secrete an acidic waste-product that triggers the start of cavities.

This is why it’s so important to floss and brush daily! Good oral hygiene disrupts the bacterial activity.

How Do You Repair Acid Erosion?

Once the enamel is gone, it won’t grow back. What you can do is strengthen your teeth with fluoride to avoid cavities, sensitivity, and further erosion.

Remineralizing toothpastes may also help.

Depending on the location and extent of the damage, your dentist may recommend dental bonding, crowns, or porcelain veneers. Talk with your dentist to find out which restorative therapy is best for your smile.

Posted on behalf of:
Preston Sherry Dental Associates
6134 Sherry Ln
Dallas, TX 75225
(214) 691-7371

Oct
12

Is Acid Reflux Destroying Your Smile?

Have you ever been surprised during your dental exam, when your dentist or someone else asked if you had acid reflux disease? A lot of people don’t know it, but unmanaged or severe acid reflux can cause irreversible damage to your teeth.  

There are very unique symptoms that are present in the mouth when a dental patient has GERD. Typically there will be shallow depressions just on the cusp tips of the molars (back teeth.) The depressions are caused by acidic erosion. 

Acid erosion occurs as a result of stomach acids being sent back up into the mouth caused by GERD. If reflux is not present, these acids never make their way back up to the mouth. Unmanaged acid reflux can cause erosion of the enamel throughout the mouth. This causes teeth to be darker yellow, thinner, and washed out. 

What can your dentist do to help delay or repair damage to your teeth as a result of acid reflux? 

Fluoride treatments

 More frequent use of fluoride is important. Fluoride varnish and prescription strength gel can strengthen tooth enamel that is susceptible to erosion and tooth decay.

Porcelain crowns

In areas of severe enamel erosion, full coverage crowns can cover the complete tooth so that no more damage can take place. Crowns are useful for preserving teeth that are no longer structurally able to withstand normal use. 

Routine X-rays

Regular x-rays allow your dentist to check between your teeth (an area not visible during a clinical examination.) This can pinpoint possible problem areas before they become too severe. 

Your dentist will always try to help prevent problems or treat them when they’re as small as possible. If you have active reflux disease, it’s important to see your dentist at least every 6 months.

Posted on behalf of Find Local Dentists

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