Preventing Tooth Wear

Tooth wear is a very common problem in children and adults in the UK.

It presents in different ways. There are three types of tooth wear: erosion; attrition and abrasion.

Correct diagnosis is key to enable correct treatment.

Stopping the habits contributing to the problem and offering preventive advice is the first step. This may include:

Changing the diet and brushing habits
Referring you to your GP to treat any stomach problems
• Provide a mouthguard and advise specific jaw exercises which would stop the tooth grinding/clenching and jaw joint pain or headaches.

After we have stabilized everything, we would then discuss the different treatment options available to you, to improve aesthetics and function. They would be customized to your needs.

Click here to make an appointment for a consultation tailored to you or call 07818498018 for further assistance and advice.

Please read below if you would like to find out more about types of tooth wear and their treatments.

TYPES OF TOOTH WEAR AND THEIR TREATMENTS

Erosion comes as a result of intrinsic or extrinsic acidic sources, which wear the tooth’s enamel and dentine.

Extrinsic sources include fizzy/carbonated drinks, fruit juices, citrus fruits etc.
Intrinsic sources of acid come from the stomach.

We can then build up the teeth, to replace the missing tooth structure with a tooth coloured resin material (Composite), porcelain veneers or crowns.

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Attrition is the wear which occurs when we grind or clench our teeth during the day or even in our sleep.

Usually this may happen when we are undergoing various stressful times at work or general changes in life which cause anxiety.

Some patients may experience jaw and/or muscle pain, together with headaches and tension around the head and neck regions. This is called Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD). The excessive forces on the teeth from the grinding could lead to tooth wear and even fracture.

In order to prevent this we may advise some jaw exercises and remedies to soothe the joint and the surrounding muscles. We may also recommend a specialised mouthguard to stop the grinding or clenching which also relaxes the muscles. This is in the form of a hard acrylic which seats on the teeth.

They may also be recommended after the teeth have been built up to replace the tooth structure lost. This is in order to maintain the composites, veneers or crowns for longer.

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Abrasion is the type of wear associated with excessive brushing or incorrect brushing technique.

This may lead to the gum moving away from the tooth, exposing the dentine and causing tooth sensitivity. Furthermore, if the trauma continues, it can initiate saucer shaped cavities to be created on the root surface, which will be an aesthetic concern to patients with a high smile.

Usually correction of your brushing technique and sometimes changing the type of toothpaste you use can prevent you from losing further tooth structure. We can recreate the anatomy lost, by filling in these cavities with an aesthetic tooth coloured filling material.

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