Imagine all your teeth wearing away. A frightful thought. Everyone has some degree of tooth wear. However, in susceptible people it starts to advance at an uncontrolled rate.
Tooth wear is a result of:
- Attrition (excessive rubbing together of two parts) which is a result of:
- A bad bite which results from teeth that interfere with normal jaw closure.
- Toothpaste that contains abrasive polishing agents like tooth whiteners and tooth scrubbers (i.e. pumice, titanium oxide, etc.)
- Increased mouth acids from regurgitation & acid reflux.
- Soda swishing (i.e. Coke swishing, Pepsi swishing, Sprite swishing, etc.)
- Fruit mulling: sucking or chewing on fruit pulp for a prolonged period prior to swallowing it.
- All patterns of tooth wear can be traced back to one or more of these causes. Fortunately, we have strong enamel to resist tooth wear. When does the wear become a problem? It becomes a problem when the enamel is gone and the dentin is exposed. The exposed softer dentin breaks down 7 times faster than enamel and that is when tooth wear can begin to advance at increasingly rapid rate.
- Study the 10 Stages of Tooth Wear listed below. Do a self-comparison with your teeth.
The 10 Stages of Teeth Wear
- No wear, enamel is 3.5mm thick
- Wear restricted to enamel
- Wear with some dentin exposure
- Wear with total dentin exposure
- Chemical erosion of the exposed dentin
- Chipping of unsupported enamel surrounding the eroded dentin. This is a very thin edge which gets its strength from dentin
- Tooth sensitivity and decay of the exposed dentin
- Tooth shifting following the loss of tooth height and tooth looseness from an increased load
- Tooth loss due to fracture
- Increased wear and tear on the surrounding teeth
Tooth wear will progress unless you have your particular causative factors corrected.
Call Restorative and Aesthetic Dentistry at (719)593-0005 today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Seaman to learn what can be done to stop tooth wear progression.