Commonly Asked Questions About Tooth Enamel

Your tooth enamel protects your teeth from cavities and tooth decay. Your enamel is a thin, semi-transparent layer that covers the outside of each tooth. Did you know that it is stronger than any substance in the human body? Despite its strength, it can be damaged by the foods you eat and beverages you consume. Tooth enamel loss or erosion concerns dentists because it cannot heal itself. It does not contain living cells like other tissues in your mouth.

What Causes Enamel Loss?

Eating sugary or sour foods can contribute to enamel erosion. In addition, drinking sugary beverages such as sodas, fruit juices, energy drinks, and sports drinks also weaken and damage enamel. Some medications can affect the health of your enamel. Vitamin C supplements, acoffee, tea, anti-histamines, and aspirin all have the potential to damage your enamel as well. Alcoholics and bulimics tend to experience enamel erosion.

How Do I know if I Have Enamel Loss?

Most patients who have weakened or damaged enamel experience sensations of pain if they consume hot or very cold beverages. Yellowing of the teeth is sometimes an indicator of enamel loss as well. Dents in the tooth’s structure or jagged edges can also point to enamel damage from abrasion, erosion or stress on the teeth.

How Do I Prevent Damage to My Enamel?

Commit to thorough dental hygiene. When you brush your teeth properly and floss daily, you can reduce your risk for enamel loss. Cut down on sugary and acidic foods, and if you happen to consume problematic foods, brush your teeth and rinse your mouth with water afterwards. (Yoou may want to rinse off your teeth first, to reduce teh acid on the teeth before you brush.) Be sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day to dilute harmful particles in your mouth.

If you are concerned about enamel loss or tooth decay, contact our Cupertino dentist office at (408) 996-8495 to schedule an examination with Dr. Randall LaFrom. We serve patients in San Jose, Sunnyvale, Campbell, Saratoga, and Santa Clara County.

~ by cupertinodentist on January 25, 2012.

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