Your dental enamel is the strongest layer of your tooth—it is hard and pretty non-porous, so that you can chew comfortably. Dental enamel protects more vulnerable tooth layers like the dentin and the dental core (which houses nerves, tissues, and roots). Consequently, it is very important that you take steps to protect and preserve your dental enamel day to day.
Here are some of the habits and substances that can weaken and damage dental enamel:
This condition is characterized by chronic dental grinding and clenching. As you would imagine, this puts an enormous amount of pressure on your dental enamel. Over time, bruxism can lead to cracked and chipped enamel, as well as premature enamel deterioration.
2. Acidic Consumables
Food and drinks with high levels of acid, can lead to enamel demineralization. Citric foods and juices, for example, can be tough on your dental enamel. In order to minimize acid-related damage you should consume these things in moderation, and rinse your mouth with water after eating and drinking, so that you can minimize the amount of time that acidic substances sit on your teeth.
3. Improper Dental Tools
Your dental enamel can also start to thin because you are cleaning your smile with tools and implements that are too abrasive. Most people can effectively clean their teeth with soft-bristled toothbrushes, while medium and firm bristles may be too rough. Using the wrong toothbrush can lead to enamel erosion as well as gum tissue recession.
4. Chewing Hard Substances
If your regularly chew on ice, hard candies, or mints, you may prematurely wear down your dental enamel.
The good news is that there are simple steps that you can take in order to protect your dental enamel, and maintain a healthy smile. Our Saint Louis dentists can give you additional advice and information—just give our office a call to schedule a personal consultation.