Treating Worn Down Teeth
How can you treat a condition like worn down teeth? Is the tooth wear the result of an underlying condition, like bruxism? Is it the result of years of wear and tear? Is the root cause simply the way you brush your teeth? Teeth wear is a complex issue, but it is also completely natural. Odds are pretty high at this point in your life, you have changed your residence more than your teeth. Theyve been with you for a lot–let’s review some of the top reasons for teeth wear and see if we can keep them around for awhile.
What causes Worn Down Teeth?
Worn down teeth are often a dialectic problem; a problem that results from multiple factors over a length of time. It could be a result of trauma, disease, or infection within your mouth. However this usually expresses itself as tooth loss. True tooth wear leaves the teeth in place, but it changes the shape and appearance of them, eventually leading to pain or a complete changing of the tooth’s appearance. The three usual suspects behind tooth wear are as follows.
* Bruxism- Bruxism is a condition which presents as tooth grinding. Sometimes bruxism occurs during the day, and the patient compulsively clenches or grinds their teeth. Most commonly it occurs at night, and the patient is never aware of the damage they are doing to their jaw and teeth. Bruxism can be managed with a night guard, a mouthguard worn at night which protects the upper and lower rows from each other. The guard is designed to protect your airways so you can sleep soundly and protect your dental health. However this is only effective at stopping damage before it occurs. Maintain regular visits with your dentist to help diagnose bruxism before it becomes a problem.
* Abrasion- Abrasion is a scratching of the surface that eventually leads to a wearing down of the tooth. This is commonly a result of over or improper brushing. If your dentist notices signs of abrasion, you may opt to use a softer toothbrush, different toothpaste, and speak with your hygienist. They can show you the most effective way to brush your teeth while still protecting the enamel and sheen of your tooth.
* Erosion- The acids in our saliva, and our stomach acids, can actually erode the structures of our teeth. This acidity can penetrate the outside of the tooth, and the gumline and affect the roots of our teeth. The effect is miniscule usually, but for patients suffering from GERD or bulimia, the effects can be severe. Speaking with your dentist can help to diagnose early signs of these conditions to get you the help you need.
Treating worn down Teeth
Treatment is always dependent on the patient. Some patients will require acid neutralizing medication, some will require night guards–some will require replacement teeth. The quickest way to treat the factors behind your tooth wear is to see your dental care professional. Begin with a comprehensive examination and a thorough cleaning. You’ll feel great after the cleaning, and it will provide your dentist with a clean surface to begin understanding what is causing your worn down teeth.