Phoenix Tooth Erosion Treatments
Tooth enamel can be gradually damaged by biting, grinding, and chewing the foods and drinks we consume. Fortunately, restorative treatments can improve the appearance of damaged teeth and protect against further decay. At Advanced Dental Health in Phoenix, cosmetic dentists regularly perform tooth erosion treatments to restore patients’ smiles.
What Is Tooth Erosion?
Each tooth is covered by a thin, hard layer of enamel that protects it from damage caused by grinding, biting, and chewing. When this enamel becomes worn down or damaged, it is known as tooth erosion. Damaged enamel can make teeth more susceptible to bacteria and decay, and can cause tooth sensitivity and pain. Because chipped or cracked enamel cannot be restored by the body, tooth erosion requires restorative dentistry treatment to improve tooth appearance and function.
What Causes Tooth Erosion?
Often, daily wear and tear is the underlying cause of damaged enamel. Common causes of tooth erosion include:
- Clenching and grinding. The pressure put on teeth by clenching and grinding - often related to stress - can damage enamel.
- Abrasion. Using abrasive toothpaste or a medium/hard toothbrush can lead to enamel loss. Biting on hard objects (like fingernails, pens, or hard foods) and chewing tobacco can cause tooth erosion.
- Acidic beverages. Drinking large quantities of soda, juice, and other highly acidic beverages can do serious damage to tooth enamel.
- Gastrointestinal problems. Conditions like acid reflux or frequent vomiting can wear away tooth enamel over time.
- Genetics. Some people are simply more susceptible to tooth erosion, even when they maintain a thorough oral hygiene regimen.
Tooth Erosion Treatments
Depending upon the type and location of your tooth erosion, a skilled and experienced cosmetic dentist may use any of the following treatments:
- Bonding. Adding bonding solution to the surface of teeth can correct chips and cracks. Bonding protects teeth from additional damage and, because it is seamlessly matched to your existing teeth, restores an attractive appearance.
- Crowns. If damage is severe and cannot be corrected with bonding, your dentist may recommend treating the entire tooth with a dental crown. Like bonding, a crown will protect your tooth from further decay and restore appearance.
- Dental fillings. Treating erosion is, essentially, treating decay. Fillings may be required to eliminate decay and rebuild tooth structure.
Prevent Tooth Erosion
When it comes to enamel erosion, prevention is often the best cure. Take the following steps to stop tooth erosion before it starts:
- Avoid acidic foods and drinks. Consume items like sodas, fruit juice, and carbonated beverages in moderation, and rinse your mouth with water afterward. Using a straw can help prevent acidic drinks from coming into contact with your teeth.
- Drink more water. Water can help cleanse the mouth of acidic residue, and prevent dryness that can cause bacteria to build up.
- Use fluoride. Your dentist may recommend a fluoride rinse during one of your office visits, and you can choose to use fluoride toothpaste or mouthwash. Ask your dentist for recommendations.
Seeking Treatment for Tooth Erosion?
If you’re experiencing tooth erosion, seeking treatment quickly can prevent decay from progressing. For help restoring the look and feel of your smile, contact Advanced Dental Health today!