Saint Louis Dentist Discusses the Symptoms and Causes of Acid Erosion

Written by Dr. Grayem on Feb 21, 2012

Our Saint Louis dentists believe that in order to maintain healthy smiles, our patients need to really understand the dental difficulties they will face every day at home. We already know that junk food, like sugary snacks can hurt your teeth, however, there is another equally common threat to teeth—acid erosion.


Acid erosion occurs when dental enamel weakens and softens due to exposure to acidic substances. Acid erosion can progress undetected for a long-time, slowly degrading dental enamel and leaving your teeth prone to cavities. So how can you tell if you’re suffering from acid erosion? Patients battling acid erosion will often notice that their teeth are more sensitive than they used to be. Additionally, you may find that your teeth are more prone to cavities than they were before. However, in order to monitor the progression of your acid erosion, and perhaps in order to identify it in the first place, you’ll need to discuss your concerns with your dentist during your semi-annul professional dental cleanings.


Although acid erosion is sometimes unavoidable, there are certain simple steps that you can take to minimize the likelihood of dental erosion.


This first thing to remember is that acid erosion occurs when acidic substances are allowed to sit on the teeth and penetrate the dental enamel. To help avoid this try:


-drinking acidic substances with a straw

-rinsing your teeth with water after consuming acidic foods or drinks

-refraining from brushing your teeth vigorously after drinking or eating acid, as your teeth may still be in a weakened state.


Working with your dentist, you can manage the effects of dental erosion and maintain healthy teeth for years to come. Give our Saint Louis dental office a call if you have questions or you’d like to schedule an appointment. As always we’re here to help!