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How to Prevent Dental Erosion?

Published on Feb 10, 2015 and last reviewed on Nov 10, 2021   -  5 min read

Abstract

Dental erosion is the wearing away of the tooth structure by acids. This article discusses in detail the causes and management of dental erosion.

Contents
How to Prevent Dental Erosion?

What Is Dental Erosion?

What Is the Difference Between Erosion, Abrasion, and Attrition?

What Causes Erosion?

What Are the Changes in the Tooth Structure Caused by Erosion?

The other clinical appearance of erosion are,

Are There Any Medical Problems That Can Cause Dental Erosion?

Bulimia is a medical condition where the patients want themselves to be sick so that they can lose weight. This can damage the tooth enamel because of the high levels of acid in the vomit.

Acids produced by the stomach come up into the mouth (known as gastro-oesophageal reflux). Dental erosion are found in people suffering from,

What Is the Prevalence and Incidence of Tooth Erosion?

High prevalence is observed in children, and a high incidence is seen in adolescents.

What Are the Risk Factors of Dental Erosion?

How to Prevent Dental Erosion?

How Is Erosion Managed?

Identification of the etiology is the first step in the management of erosion. When excessive dietary intake of acidic foods or beverages is discovered, then patient education and counseling are important. When the patient has symptoms of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), then he or she should be referred to a physician for complete evaluation and institution of therapy if indicated. A patient with salivary hypofunction may be given sugarless chewing gums or mints to increase the residual salivary flow.

In some cases, the etiological factors are not identifiable, and in other cases, the causative factor is difficult to control, such as alcoholism. Regardless of the cause, it is important to follow the preventive measures of erosion, and one of the important preventive measures is patient education. Much erosion prevention depends on the patient's compliance with dietary modifications, use of an occlusal splint, use of topical fluorides, etc.

What Is the Treatment for Eroded Teeth?

Restoration of the tooth structure with a crown (tooth cap) or veneer. In severely eroded teeth, Root Canal Treatment (RCT) may be needed, followed by restoration of the tooth structure with a crown.

Frequently Asked Questions


1.

How To Treat Dental Erosion?

Two ways of treating dental erosion are:
- Tooth bonding, a cosmetic procedure, can be used in milder cases where the resin is tinted, matching the color of the teeth is applied over the affected enamel, and once set, it is bonded to the teeth following trimming and polishing.
- Crown can be placed on the damaged tooth in more severe cases to restore its function.

2.

Can a Dentist Fix Dental Erosion?

The dentist will suggest dental bonding if you are experiencing the earlier signs of enamel erosion. This is a relatively conservative restorative procedure. The dentist will place a tooth-colored resin on your teeth that will bond with your teeth and form a protective layer over the enamel before it began to erode. But in more severe cases, the dentist will suggest a veneer or a crown to your damaged teeth to prevent further decay or erosion.

3.

How Does a Dentist Fix Tooth Erosion at the Gum Line?

Tooth erosion commonly occurs at the gum line, leading to exposure of the root surface and the nerve endings of the teeth. For mild erosion with sensitivity, the dentist will suggest desensitizing toothpaste or a filling with tooth-colored material. Still, with exposure of nerve endings in severe cases, the dentist may recommend a veneer or a crown to fix it.

4.

Can Acid Erosion on Teeth Be Reversed?

Acids consumed from food items like citrus fruits, vinegar, or soft drinks can dissolve or erode the enamel off teeth by the washing or bathing action. The acid will cause the tooth surface to lose minerals from surface. We cannot reverse acid erosion, but people can take steps to protect their teeth against further progression. The portion of enamel lost cannot be replaced naturally, but it requires restorative dentistry.

5.

How Does Enamel Erosion Look Like?

In case of enamel erosion, the teeth may look yellow or especially shiny, with increased sensitivity to hot, cold, or sweet foods and roughness around the teeth' edges.

6.

What Can Be the Cause for the Erosion of Teeth?

- The leading cause of enamel erosion are acids found in the foods and liquids that are consumed.
- Regularly consumed foods and drinks with a pH below 5.7 may induce dental erosion.
- Improper brushing technique.
- The acid secreted in the stomach during the digestive process can dissolve any food, including bone and teeth.

7.

Can Coffee Be the Reason for Enamel Erosion?

Coffee is an acidic beverage that could help bacteria within the mouth to produce acids, leading to enamel erosion.

8.

How To Restore My Enamel Naturally?

To restore enamel naturally, you need to:
- Stop snacking.
- Avoid refined sugar and grains in your diet.
- Consume fat-soluble vitamins.
- Consume enough minerals.
- Support nutrient assimilation.

9.

What Type of Foods Can Cause Staining In the Teeth?

Acids can wear down the teeth while increasing the chances of stains setting in. The foods that can cause staining are:
- Coffee.
- Candies and sweets.
- Citrus fruits.
- Soft drinks.
- Tea.
- Berries.
- Red wine.
- Tomato sauce.
- Curry.
- Balsamic vinegar.

10.

Why Is Dental Erosion a Common Problem in Bulimics?

Studies show that between 47 and 93 percent of bulimia nervosa patients who vomit exhibit damage to tooth enamel. If you engage in self-induced vomiting, you should be aware that bringing acidic contents of your stomach into your mouth may cause erosion of the enamel surface of your teeth.

11.

How To Fix Acid Erosion on Teeth?

To fix acid erosion on teeth, you can use fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse to replace the damage in milder cases or with dental fillings, veneers, or crowns in severe cases. To avoid further damage, you can:
- Drink plenty of water after consuming the acidic food or drink.
- Use a straw for drinking acidic beverages to reduce their contact with the teeth.
- Replace carbonated drinks with water, milk, or tea.

Article Resources

Last reviewed at:
10 Nov 2021  -  5 min read

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