When dental damage develops, the entire health of the mouth is at risk. Enamel damage can expose the sensitive inner layers of a tooth, thus increasing the risk of dental complications, including root canal infection and tooth loss. To prevent these types of complications, it is important to treat dental damage and restore a protective barrier around the outside of the tooth. At 38th Street Dental, our experienced dentists offer a comprehensive range of restorative dentistry treatments to address dental damage and rebuild the structure of the tooth. Tooth erosion is one of the most common causes of dental damage. Our dentists can discuss enamel damage and tooth erosion with our Austin, TX patients, and recommend a treatment plan that will most effectively restore the strength, health, and function of the damaged tooth.
What is Tooth Erosion?
Tooth erosion is a condition that causes damage to the structure of the tooth. Erosion destroys the outer layer of the tooth, or the enamel, first, but can then progress to the deeper layers of tooth structure. The damage that results from tooth erosion is very similar to that of tooth decay. However, the causes of tooth erosion are completely different than those of tooth decay. Tooth erosion occurs when the pH balance of the mouth is off. Specifically, a highly acidic oral environment leads to tooth erosion. If acids build up around the teeth, they can chemically dissolve tooth structure, leaving areas of wear and destruction. Tooth erosion will continue to progress until it is treated and the tooth is restored.
Treating Tooth Erosion
Treating tooth erosion is vital to preventing serious oral health complications. First, it is important to take steps to reduce acids in the mouth and restore the proper pH balance. The following practices can keep the acidity of the mouth low so that further erosion does not occur:
- Brush the teeth regularly (at least twice a day) to prevent acid from building up around the teeth
- Reduce consumption of highly acidic foods and beverages, such as wine, colas, and citrus fruits or juices
- Drink water frequently throughout the day to keep the mouth moist
- If it is not possible to brush the teeth after a meal, chew sugar-free gum to promote saliva production, which will act as a natural tooth cleanser
- When brushing, use a toothpaste that contains fluoride
Even if the pH balance of the mouth is restored, it will be necessary to repair any dental damage that tooth erosion has caused, otherwise, bacteria will still be able to reach the inner layers of the tooth, where an infection could develop. We offer a comprehensive range of restorative dentistry treatments to repair all stages of tooth erosion. Depending on the extent of dental damage, our dentists may recommend restoring the tooth with a dental filling, an inlay or onlay, or a crown. We will customize a treatment plan that best meets the unique needs of each patient.
Acid erosion damages tooth structure and leaves the mouth vulnerable to oral health complications. To learn more about treating acid erosion and the damage it causes, contact us at your earliest convenience. The experienced dental team at 38th Street Dental look forward to meeting you.