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John P. Goodman DDS

The Dangers of Tooth Erosion

By Dr. John Goodman on August 30, 2013

The Dangers of Tooth ErosionThere are many serious dental health issues that a person may face. Some may be related to the teeth, other to the gums, and still others to other structures in the mouth. Thankfully when you meet with a skilled cosmetic dentist, you'll be able to learn about your many different treatment options when it comes to achieving optimal dental health and wellness.

One dental health problem coming up more and more as a topic of discussion is tooth erosion. We'd like to look into this dental problem right now and what it entails.

What is tooth erosion?

Also referred to as acid erosion and dental erosion, tooth erosion refers to the damage to natural tooth structure caused by an acidic pH in the mouth. This weakens the teeth and leaves them looking jagged and damaged.

Is tooth erosion the same thing as tooth decay?

Though it may sound similar, tooth decay and tooth erosion are actually two entirely different dental health issues. Tooth decay is caused by plaque created by the bacteria that naturally occurs in the mouth rather than acidic pH. Both may occur simultaneously, however, causing major damage to your teeth.

During an exam, your dentist will be able to identify if you are dealing with tooth decay, tooth erosion, or both.

Causes of Tooth Erosion

The most common causes of tooth erosion include:

  • Soft drinks
  • Citrus and fruit juices
  • Coffee
  • Beer
  • Vinegar
  • Soy sauce

We should also point out that gastric fluid/bile can cause acid erosion to occur. This is why many bulimics suffer from dental erosion, and why tooth erosion is a sign to look out for should you suspect a friend or family member is suffering from an eating disorder.

Treatments for Tooth Erosion

The most common treatments for tooth erosion are dental fillings, dental bonding, inlays, onlays, porcelain veneers, and dental crowns. The right treatment for you and your needs will really depend on the extent of tooth damage that has been sustained.

Ideally, dental health professionals will want to work as conservatively as possible as this will ensure that patients maintain as much of their natural tooth structure as possible. This is best in the long run for lasting dental health.

Prevention of Tooth Erosion

The best way to combat tooth erosion is a mix of preventative and general dentistry. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing at least every night is essential for maintaining a basic pH.

Another important consideration is to drink a glass of water while having any foods or beverages that are acidic. This will help remove acidic food particles or juices that may still be in the mouth.

And of course, regular visits to the dentist are a must. By going in for regular checkups twice a year, you will be able to get minor problems addressed and treated before they become more serious.

Learn More About Advanced Dental Care Treatment

If you would like to learn more about tooth erosion treatment and prevention as well as your many other options for achieving excellent dental health, be sure to contact our Kansas City dental care center today. Our entire team looks forward to meeting you in person and ensuring that you receive the dental care that you need.

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