Over your lifetime, it’s only natural for your teeth to wear down over time. A good dentist will help you with treatment planning and strategies for preventing and managing tooth wear. By preventing dental erosion, abrasion and attrition, you’re protecting against tooth loss.
At Allander Dental Care, we identify the cause of your tooth wear quickly and efficiently. After an assessment, your treatment planning can begin. This might involve lifestyle changes (such as fluoride toothpaste or a change of diet) and the passive management of tooth wear. Or our dentist might recommend a minor procedure to help build up your tooth enamel.
Whatever we decide, you can trust us to implement and oversee the best measures to protect your teeth and oral health.
Along with tooth decay and gum disease, tooth wear is an increasingly common problem in adults. Teeth can become short, unsightly and in some cases rough and sensitive.
Simply put, tooth wear can lead to tooth loss. If your tooth gets so worn down that it’s not functioning as it should, it’s negatively impacting the rest of your oral health or making you feel self-conscious about your smile, there’s a chance that your dentist will choose to remove the tooth rather than treat it. That’s why it’s very important to take preventative action before there’s a big problem.
A worn-down tooth will also be more sensitive than a healthy one, which can cause discomfort while eating and drinking.
There are a variety of reasons why your teeth might simply wear down or in some cases dissolve over a prolonged period.
Some causes of tooth wear include:
Your tooth enamel won’t grow back; however, there are many ways in which your dentist can treat your teeth to prevent further damage. The treatment they recommend will depend on the cause of the wear and the extent of the damage.
Enamel can be worn away with excessive tooth brushing or when opposed with poorly contoured porcelain crowns. Constant wear from brushing can cause a notch like surface at the gum line as it recedes. This can not only look unsightly, but it leaves the tooth and gums more vulnerable to bacteria and, ultimately, infection. It can cause a great sensitivity to the tooth and trigger discomfort while eating and drinking.
Your dentist might recommend that you swap to a soft-bristled brush or invest in an electric toothbrush with a pressure sensor. These brushes alert you if you’re pushing too hard as you brush your teeth.
For more extreme cases, we might place a small filling on the side of the tooth to prevent further wear. Your hygienist may apply fluoride to your teeth at preventative appointments to help with the sensitivity.
Worn dentition can be caused by tooth grinding or clenching, sometimes during sleep. This wears down and flattens the tooth’s chewing surface and can cause other medical problems such as headaches, jaw and neck pain, and disordered sleeping. We might ask you some additional questions about your lifestyle to try and determine the cause of your teeth grinding; frequently, it’s stress or anxiety.
If the cause of your bruxism is a misalignment in the mouth, we will recommend further orthodontic treatment such as Invisalign. In other cases, we might use bonding to protect the remaining enamel or recommend an occlusal splint like a special mouthguard. We’ll do whatever is best to preserve your natural teeth and, if needed, to rebuild what has already been worn down.
Tooth tissue is lost with excessive consumption of acidic foods or carbonated drinks coupled with poor oral health habits. While these substances in themselves don’t dissolve the teeth, the acids in these foods contribute to a pH imbalance in the mouth, creating an acidic atmosphere that will wear the teeth away over time. Tooth erosion is also associated with some cases of gastric reflux and eating disorders such as bulimia.
Your dentist will first recommend some lifestyle changes. Having these drinks with a meal might help balance out the acid levels in the mouth or consume them quickly rather than sipping them. However, cutting them out altogether is, of course, the best and healthiest option. At Allander Dental Care, our friendly team can help you create a plan to implement a lasting shift in your habits.
As above, if your teeth are very worn, we may recommend bonding or filling treatments to build the enamel back up again.
At Allander Dental care, you can trust us to provide you with the most comprehensive, high quality and effective treatments. We constantly endeavour to diagnose the problem swiftly and immediately provide more straightforward treatments (monitoring and prevention). After the cause of the problem has been diagnosed, comprehensive care is offered.
If more complex treatment is required to restore satisfactory function and deliver an excellent aesthetic result, we'll take action on this as quickly as possible. Our staff are helpful, knowledgeable and will be there to advise you every step of the way.
Please contact the dental practice today and book your assessment. We look forward to hearing from you.