Dental hygiene is an extremely important part of your overall health that is too often overlooked and underrated by many Americans. Approximately 1 in 4 adults within the United States has some type of tooth decay that is not being treated by a professional. Tooth enamel is a tough substance found on your teeth, however, erosion is the leading cause of damage to the enamel in adults across the world.
What is tooth enamel?
Teeth are made up of many levels, with enamel being the thin layer surrounding the outside of the tooth. Enamel is a tough, durable substance that covers the visible part of the tooth. It is important that you practice good hygiene techniques including brushing your teeth and flossing two times per day to protect the enamel of your teeth.
Your teeth are at risk of damage every day as you bite, chew, and crunch food or even grind your teeth whether you are sleeping or awake. Enamel plays a vital role in maintaining adequate protection of your teeth. Without enough enamel, your teeth are no longer protected and are at risk of developing extreme sensitivity to certain temperatures.
It is important that you do all you can to protect your teeth as weakened enamel can regain its strength through specialized dental care, however, once the enamel has become damaged it cannot be repaired or replaced leaving you at an increased risk of developing cavities and tooth decay.
What are the common signs of tooth erosion?
There are several symptoms that a person may experience when their teeth have begun to erode. The severity of symptoms depends on the stage of erosion and may include:
- Extreme sensitivity: Enamel is designed to protect your teeth from damage, bacteria, and certain temperatures. When there is erosion, your teeth are no longer protected and are at risk of experiencing extreme sensitivity to sweet foods like chocolate or other candies as well as sensitivity to hot or cold foods that you did not have before.
- Discoloration: Dentin is the layer of your tooth that is responsible for providing color to your teeth. When the layer of enamel has become eroded, it is no longer able to protect the layer of dentin beneath it resulting in teeth appearing more yellow or discolored.
- Damage to Teeth: When your teeth experience erosion, there is no longer the tough outer layer to protect them from cracking or breaking. When tooth erosion occurs, your teeth will no longer feel smooth and uniform. You will notice them feeling more jagged and uneven.
When erosion is present, teeth are much more susceptible to cavities, damage, and decay of the inner layers of the tooth.
What are the causes of tooth erosion?
There are many factors that have been proven to attribute to tooth erosion including:
- taking in too many sugary or acidic drinks such as soda or fruit drinks without proper brushing habits
- xerostomia (dry mouth)
- sour candy
- GERD (Acid reflux) as this medical condition is known to cause acid to be brought from the stomach contents into the mouth
- aspirin, vitamin C, antihistamines, or other medications
- alcohol abuse
Call the Dental Experts of Simi Valley, CA
At the Dental Group of Simi Valley, we have been creating beautiful smiles, one family, at a time since 1963! We use modern technology such as digital x-rays, 3D imaging, CEREC, and CAM single-visit crowns as just a few ways of making your dental experience as easy as possible.
Dr. Herschel Berger and Dr. Laura Jen Kin, husband and wife dental duo, are second-generation dentists serving the community of Simi Valley. With an excellent reputation and outstanding awards, this family-owned and operated practice strives to extend the meaning of family to each patient as well.
As a family dentistry office, we are able to provide exceptional oral health to the whole family including:
- oral diagnosis
- treatment plans
- preventative oral care
- root canal
- porcelain crowns and bridges
- periodontal care
- TMJ treatment
Have you found yourself experiencing extreme sensitivity recently? Maybe your jaw has been killing you from grinding your teeth at night? Give the dental experts of Simi Valley a call to begin your path to a healthy mouth and a beautiful smile.