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There are a lot of ways that tooth enamel (hardest substance in the body) can wear off – decay and erosion being the most common. While decay is an infectious process with bacteria playing a significant role, erosion is nowhere associated with bacteria. The tooth gets ‘eroded’ in small amounts with the various food substances that you eat. These include the sodas that wash down the burgers and pizzas, the various sports drinks that are used to boost performance, the lime and oranges that are constantly sucked, and other acidic and sugary foods.
It does not mean you should not have an occasional soda or a sports drink or a citrus fruit. It is the constant and overuse of these that is damaging. The oral pH goes to a very acidic level (below 5.5) with these which then leads to demineralization of the enamel. The environment that is usually produced by the bacteria is caused by the acidic and sugary foods.
In some cases, acids could come from an internal source too. People with gastroesophageal reflux disease may have the acid coming from the esophagus, which also can lead to erosion.
However, there is nothing to be disheartened about as the lost enamel can be replaced to restore both tooth function and appearance. The most commonly affected teeth are the inner surfaces of the upper incisors and the biting surfaces of the lower molars. The result is tooth sensitivity, darker teeth, and increased chances of tooth decay and fracture.
Repair Mechanisms: Treating erosion has two components to it – to repair the lost tooth structure and to prevent further damage. The second is equally or rather more important than the first one.
Restorations: In mild cases of erosion, the lost tooth structure can be rebuilt with composite resins or glass ionomer cement which usually restores lost tooth structure to its earlier version. Usually done in one sitting, it should not take more than an hour. The results would last longer if further erosion is prevented.
Crowns: In cases where a lot of tooth structure has been lost and the remaining enamel weakened, a new crown will need to be done. This offers protection against further decay and also restores esthetics and function quite effectively.
Avoid overuse of acidic, sugary drinks like sports drinks and aerated beverages.
Avoid sucking on oranges as they prolong the effect of the citric acid on the tooth.
Include toothpaste and rinse with fluoride.
Improve dairy intake, thereby providing sufficient calcium.
Follow oral hygiene habits including brushing, flossing, and regular dental visits.
Lost tooth structure unfortunately cannot be regained; however, further loss can be prevented.
If you wish to discuss about any specific dental problem, you can consult a specilized dentist and ask a free question.
I'm getting bad breath at the end of the day and having slight yellow teeth. Please help me to deal with this.
I have gap on my front teeth looking for a best durable treatment please help me out and suggest which treatment option would be better. Thank you.
I am suffering from tooth pain after filling it by a dentist. After filling once I was not able to take any food so he refilled it. Now also I am getting pain. What I can do to recover this?
I have been suffering with my tooth ache since fifteen days and also I have too much head ache. How can I overcome this problem? Please give me a good suggestion.
I have pain in one of my teeth but after 3-4 days it will be okay but it occur again at least once in a month. Facing this problem for last one year. What should I do, I wanna rid of that Problem: gum swelling & pain in just one teeth.
I have got swelling inside my mouth what should I do for it its there on my lower portion of tongue.
I'm a 21-year-old student and my teeth are yellow in color to most extend. Is there any way to whiten them by visiting a dentist or some small dental procedures?
What is the side effect of componeers in front of the teeth can I bite apple or eat chicken will it fall or not will my teeth will be safe how long does it lasts and what is the cost for three front teeth.
I am tobacco addicted from many years. But I leave it 6 months ago. I can't eat spicy food. I hadn't eat rice for 3 months. When I eat spicy food my mouth became full of water.
I am a 22 years old boy. When I am drinking cold water then a little bit of pain is occurring in my teeth. What should I do?
After I have been fixed with cast partial denture there is a flurry of mouth ulcers which aren't healing and face is swollen l don't have acidity or stomach upsets but the ulcers refuse to go even after bcom please caps feeling feverish with aches in my jaw and sideburns please help.
If you smoke 20 or more cigarettes a day, you're six times more likely to develop mouth cancer than someone who doesn't smoke. So giving up smoking is important if you want to look and feel better.