Causes of tooth erosion

Tooth erosion is very common. It is reported in 34.1% of children and 31.8% of adults.

Enamel is the thin outer covering of the tooth. It is the part of the tooth that is visible. Tooth erosion shows up as hollows areas in the teeth and in general, wearing away of the tooth surface and biting edges. This can expose the dentin underneath which is a darker yellow color than the enamel. Because the dentin is sensitive, your teeth can also be more sensitive to heat, cold, or acidic food and drinks.

Anytime you drink acidic liquid, the enamel on your teeth becomes softer for a short while. It loses some of its mineral content. Your saliva will slowly cancel out the acidity in your mouth and get it back to a neutral balance. However, if this acid attack happens to often, your mouth does not have a chance to repair itself and any tiny particles of enamel can be brushed away. Overtime, you start to lose the outer layer of your teeth.

Bulimia is another condition that causes tooth erosion. Bulimia is the act of forcing yourself to vomit in order to lose weight. Because there are high levels of acid in vomit, erosion of tooth enamel occurs.

Acids produced by the stomach can come up into the mouth (it can occur at night during sleep).

Enamel erosion can also be caused by the following:Fruit drinks, dry mouth, diets high in sugar and starch, excessive soft drinks, etc.

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