Tooth erosion is less known and different from tooth decay but no less dangerous. Tooth erosion is a slow but steady destruction of the tooth substance mainly caused by acidic foods.
The destructive acid doesn’t come from bacteria but from food, affecting the tooth’s natural protective enamel. External influences such as chewing, brushing your teeth, or friction gradually cause tooth erosion.
In addition to acids in food, prescription medications can also be responsible for the erosion of tooth enamel. Illnesses and gastrointestinal diseases that are accompanied by frequent vomiting can trigger this effect in particular. As a result, the overly aggressive stomach acid reaches the mouth and the surface of the teeth in large quantities, damaging the enamel.
Tooth Erosion Is Sneaky
Tooth erosion is sneaky, and the first sign of damage is practically invisible. The destruction of the enamel caused by erosion is irreversible. Typically, only a dental prosthetic such as a crown provides protection once tooth erosion occurs. But it doesn’t have to get that far. If the first signs are recognized, countermeasures can prevent or slow down further destruction of the tooth enamel.
Check Your Diet
Highly acidic foods and drinks should be on the menu less often. These are things like fruit juices, soda, alcohol, and some types of fresh fruits. Young children shouldn’t drink undiluted juice often. Plus, you and your children should brush your teeth about a half an hour after eating. The 30-minute wait time is crucial because acidic foods soften your tooth enamel. If you brush immediately after eating, this can lead to damage.
Use the Right Products
At Danville Family Dentistry, we recommend regular oral care with fluoride. For example, choose mouthwash approved by the American Dental Association (ADA) that contains fluoride, and chew gum after meals. Chewing sugar-free gum helps prevent tooth erosion because chewing increases saliva production and dilutes the acid more. Some foods also neutralize acid through their proteins. These include, in particular, milk and dairy products, which are also rich in calcium.
We Care About Your Teeth
Your dental protection is our priority. It’s important to us that you receive optimal care during treatment and that the treatment is professionally planned in advance. Would you like to know more about tooth erosion and its causes and treatment options? Call us today at 317-745-4400 to schedule an appointment.
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Disclaimer: The information included in this article is for educational purposes only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.