Dental Guides

Common Causes of Tooth Enamel Loss and Erosion

Tooth enamel is one of the most important tissues in your entire body. Even though it is the hardest – it has to protect your teeth – it can still become damaged or it can erode. Tooth enamel is important because it protects the nerve of your teeth from becoming damaged – keeping the nerve healthy is important because the nerve is essentially the life force of the tooth. When it comes down to it, there are a number of reasons why tooth enamel can begin to erode or lose strength. The enamel is not impervious to certain foods, materials and other chemicals that may enter our mouths at any given time. One of the most common causes of tooth enamel – decay – comes from not brushing your teeth after you eat. This is the reason why brushing your teeth and visiting the dentist every year is so important. Here are some of the common causes of tooth enamel loss and erosion.

One common cause of tooth enamel loss is from grinding, or what is commonly known by dentists and oral health professionals as bruxism. Most people have no idea that they grind their teeth, because they are asleep when they do it. Overtime, though, teeth grinding can start to affect the enamel of the tooth and it can wear down the enamel to the point where there is serious damage. Not only can nighttime bruxism cause tooth grinding, but so can daily grinding – from eating and chewing.

Another cause of enamel erosion and loss is from having low saliva production. Some people have low saliva production, which can be caused by a number of factors, like poor health and from being dehydrated. Having a steady flow of saliva in the mouth is important, because saliva has certain teeth strengthening components in it, like calcium. Not only that, but saliva is important because it washes away certain cavity causing germs.

Next, cavities are one of the main reasons why enamel can become eroded or damaged. Cavities are caused by certain acids released by bacteria feeding on the germs in your mouth. Overtime, these acids can burrow into your enamel and can cause significant damage. Most people don’t feel the pain until the cavity reaches the nerve. This is the reason why it is so important to visit a dentist, like DeWitt Dental Associates, once or even twice a year. When it comes down to it, a regular dental cleaning is critical if you want to prevent cavities and enamel loss.

Lastly, enamel can also become damaged and eroded from certain acidic foods. If you drink a lot of coffee, smoke cigarettes or drink a lot of soft drinks, you may notice extreme enamel erosion. Soda, in particular, has been known to cause enamel damage, because the acidity levels are so high. On top of the sugar content, soda can literally wreak havoc on your teeth. This is the reason why it is so important to brush your teeth regularly – twice a day – and it helps to floss thoroughly, especially after a large meal. Not only that, but you may want to avoid over-consumption of certain foods and drinks that cause tooth enamel loss, especially if you are particularly susceptible.

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