How to Prevent Enamel Erosion: Tips and Tricks
August 15, 2023
As its well-known, enamel is one of the hardest substances in our bodies. But even its strength can erode over time, leaving our teeth susceptible to decay, sensitivity, and discoloration. In this blog post, we'll cover how you can avoid enamel erosion to keep your smile healthy and strong.
What Causes Enamel Erosion?
Before discussing preventive strategies, let's first dive into the causes of enamel erosion. Common factors include:
- Acidic foods and beverages, such as citrus fruits, soft drinks, and wine, which contain acids
- Angina or low saliva production
- Certain medications, including antihistamines and antidepressants, that may help with symptoms related to allergies or depression
- Tooth grinding or clenching
- Poor oral hygiene habits, such as brushing too hard, are likely to contribute to dental caries
Now that we understand what causes enamel erosion, let's look at some ways we can avoid further loss of enamel. Here are a few strategies and solutions.
- Adopt Good Oral Hygiene Habits
Proper brushing and flossing practices are vital in order to keep teeth healthy and avoid enamel erosion. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush with fluoride toothpaste, being careful and gentle as you brush. Aim to brush twice daily for two minutes each time, setting an alarm reminder if necessary.
Daily flossing helps remove food particles and plaque from between your teeth, decreasing the risk of decay. Also remember to cleanse your tongue; bacteria accumulation on its surface can contribute to bad breath or other oral health concerns.
- Avoid Foods and Beverages that Contain Acidic Substances
Acidic foods and beverages can gradually wear away at your enamel, so it's wise to consume them only in moderation. If you do consume something acidic, rinse your mouth out afterwards with water to wash the acid off your teeth. Don't rush into brushing right after eating or drinking something acidic; doing so may further damage your enamel.
- Stay Hydrated
Saliva plays an essential role in neutralizing acid and repairing enamel damage, so hydration is vital for maintaining proper production. Drink plenty of water throughout the day, particularly after eating or drinking acidic products.
- Wear a Mouthguard
If you find yourself grinding or clenching your teeth at night, wearing a mouthguard during sleep could help protect against enamel erosion and against injury during sports or other physical activities. A mouthguard could also serve to shield your teeth against injuries during these physical activities.
- Schedule Regular Visits to Your Dentist
Regular dental checkups are key for maintaining good oral health and identifying potential issues early on. Your dentist can detect enamel erosion and offer treatment plans to avoid further damage; plus, they'll give advice about brushing techniques and hygiene habits tailored to you specifically.
- Eat Healthy Foods
A diet rich in essential vitamins and minerals, such as calcium and vitamin D, is key for strong teeth and bones; be sure to include foods like milk, cheese, leafy greens, and nuts into your daily routine for optimum oral health.
Enamel erosion can be devastating for oral health, but by following these tips and tricks you can avoid it from ever happening. Be sure to practice good oral hygiene habits, limit acidic foods and beverages, stay hydrated, wear a mouthguard regularly, eat healthily, and regularly visit with a dentist for regular checkups. Taking these measures will allow your teeth and gums to be strong, beautiful, and long-lasting for many years!
At Westwood Dental, we offer a broad array of services. Our team has the professional experience to realize that there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all treatment, so we never use a one-size-fits-all approach to your dental plan.