December 24, 2013
There are so many different dental health issues that can affect the teeth and gums. Thankfully there are also many different treatments out there that can help your smile look its best and be its healthiest. It's important that you meet with a skilled cosmetic dentist about these matters so that all of your unique concerns can be addressed in full.
Right now we'd like to turn our attention to the nature of tooth erosion. This is a misunderstood dental health issue, but it's one that should be taken very seriously given what it means for a person's overall dental wellness.
About Tooth Erosion
Also known as acid erosion and dental erosion, tooth erosion involves the deterioration of tooth structure caused by an acidic pH in the mouth. This leads weakened tooth structure and less structural stability of a person's bite.
Substances That Cause Tooth Erosion
There are many different substances that can cause the pH within the mouth to become acidic. These include the following:
- Soft drinks
- Citrus juice
- Soy sauce
- Gastric fluid
With regard to the last substance, tooth erosion is often noticed in people who suffer from bulimia. This is usually a warning sign of the problem in addition to weight loss and fatigue.
How Tooth Erosion Differs from Tooth Decay
Many people believe that tooth erosion and tooth decay are the same thing. While both are serious restorative dentistry matters, they differ in terms of cause. While acidic pH causes tooth erosion, by contrast, tooth decay is caused by bacteria in the mouth creating plaque which eats away at tooth structure. It's possible for people to suffer from serious dental health issues related to both tooth decay and tooth erosion.
Treating Tooth Erosion
When it comes to treating tooth erosion, the old standbys for treating tooth decay apply. Dental restorations are necessary to rebuild tooth structure. By having dental fillings, inlays, onlays, or dental crowns placed, you can have your overall dental health and bite strength improved.
When tooth erosion is very serious, it may be necessary to extract a damaged tooth. This is only done as a last case scenario as it is always preferable to save a tooth when possible. The ideal restoration method for you will be discussed during the consultation process.
Prevention of Tooth Erosion
Prevention is always an ideal solution, and there are many things that you can do to prevent acid erosion from occurring. The basics of traditional dental hygiene apply:
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day (ideally after every meal)
- Floss your teeth every night (ideally after every meal)
- Visit your dentist twice a year for regular exams
We also want to recommend that you drink water rather than other kinds of beverages such as soda or fruit juice. Water has a basic pH and helps remove food particles that could be acidic. This is a simple way of keeping your mouth moist, clean, and free from problematic particles.
Learn More About Cosmetic and Restorative Dentistry
If you would like more information about acid erosion and all of your options for advanced dental wellness, be sure to contact our Reston, VA dental care center today. The entire team here looks forward to meeting you in person and helping you achieve the best dental health possible.
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