Your dental enamel is the outermost layer of your tooth, and consequently it’s responsible for protecting your tooth as a whole. Unfortunately, enamel can become damaged in a number of ways and for a number of different reasons. That’s why our Tinley Park dentists are here with some information to help you avoid enamel problems.
A number of different issues can thin and weaken enamel:
- Sugary and acidic treats: we all know that sugary snacks and drinks are harmful to oral health because they allow oral bacteria to feed and grow. And, as a byproduct of this process, bacteria release acids which soften dental enamel.
- Abrasive substances: chewing on hard candies, ice, mints, and cough drops can create weak spots in your enamel. Additionally, using a toothbrush that is too firm, or a toothpaste that is too abrasive, will wear away your enamel layer over time.
- Bruxism: patients with bruxism regularly grind or clench their teeth. The tooth-to-tooth contact caused by bruxism creates enamel damage over time.
As your dental enamel is diminished you may notice:
- Yellow or dull enamel: dental enamel is whiter and brighter than the dentin that it covers. So, as your enamel thins, more of your dentin will show through to the surface of the tooth, and your entire smile can start to look yellow and dull as a result.
- Sensitive teeth: enamel does not contain dental nerves, which is why we are able to eat, drink, and clean our teeth without discomfort. However, when your enamel isn’t strong, irritants are able to get through it reach the sensitive dentin and dental pulp below.
- Cavities and dental damage: just as irritants are able to get through diminished dental enamel, oral bacteria too bypass unhealthy enamel to become entrenched in dentin and dental pulp.
No matter what your smile looks like right now, our Tinley Park dentists can help you get it to where you want it to be. We look forward to hearing from you!