Tooth erosion

Teeth Whitening

If your teeth suffer from sensitivity to hot, cold or sweet foods or decay, you may have tooth erosion, according to your Epping Dentist.

Tooth erosion? What’s that, you ask? It’s what happens when your teeth’s outer protective layer of enamel thins. As a result, the dentine underneath is less well protected from bacteria and acid, which cause sensitive teeth and decay.

The erosion is caused by your teeth being bathed in the acid in acidic drinks, acid reflux or vomiting. Unfortunately, once it wears away, tooth enamel doesn’t regrow.

Obviously, it is a good idea to exclude acid from your mouth as much as possible for your dental health – and if you know where it has come from, with the help of your Epping Dentist, your tooth erosion can be managed, and future decline minimised.

Soft drinks, fruit juices, sports drinks and energy drinks are all dangerously acidic, so when you consume them, their acids soften and destroy tooth enamel. Just sipping one drink over time compounds the damage as your enamel is soft for all that time and open to attack by sugar-eating bacteria for longer.

It is better to consume it quickly and then rinse your mouth out with water. Drinking through a straw is also helpful as it directs the acidic drink away from your teeth. If you usually clean your teeth afterwards, wait for at least half an hour so the enamel can re-harden first.

Acid reflux, also known as heartburn, is also dangerous for tooth enamel as it delivers acid from the stomach (where it belongs) to the mouth. If you suffer from heartburn daily, it may be from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). If this happens to you, it would be a good idea to talk with your medical practitioner so the GERD can be controlled.

The acid from frequent vomiting is also a problem for teeth enamel. People with an eating disorder, bulimia, can suffer from frequent vomiting, and women in early pregnancy with morning sickness can also vomit frequently.

It’s a good idea to rinse your mouth with water or milk after vomiting – and to wait at least half an hour before cleaning your teeth. If you have bulimia, please talk with your medical practitioner about getting help with this debilitating eating disorder.

If you suspect teeth erosion, please see your Epping Dentist to find out how to best deal with it from now onwards, both for your comfort and health.

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