Tooth erosion: Causes, Symptoms, Prevention, and Treatment
Dr. Kalpana Raje
Gm palya, Bengaluru Apr 20, 2018
Tooth erosion is the deterioration of protective outer layer (enamel), exposing dentines underneath, which may lead to pain and sensitivity. Also known as acid or dental erosion, it is caused due to acidic pH in the mouth. It leads to weakened teeth and less structural stability in bite.
- Excessive consumption of soft drinks which are rich in phosphoric and citric acids.
- Consuming fruit drinks can also cause it as they contain erosive acids.
- Oral ailments like Xerostomia (dry mouth).
- Poor diet which is rich in sugar and starch.
- Gastrointestinal problems.
- Stimulants like wine, coffee, beer also cause teeth erosion.
- Other environmental and genetic factors.
- Sensitivity development is an early sign of enamel erosion. You may start feeling uneasy while consuming hot or cold food items.
- The teeth appear yellow.
- Edges and ends of teeth become more irregular and eroded.
- In later stages, the sensitivity may be too much to handle. Eating sweets or hot/cold food items may cause unbearable pain.
- Oral care is a must. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily.
- Get yourself checked regularly to diagnose at early stage itself.
- Eliminate acidic foods and drinks from your diet. Cut down on soft drinks, carbonated drinks, citrus and other acidic items.
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day.
The treatment will depend on the severity of the erosion. Lost enamel can never be recovered completely. If it is in the early stage, the loss can be eliminated by remineralisation and should be sufficient. You will also need to use specific toothpaste to fight sensitivity.
If the enamel is eroded significantly, fillings may be placed. If the erosion is too much, your dentist may recommend covering your teeth with a crown to prevent from further erosion.