Strong tooth enamel is important for tooth functionality and durability. Enamel is the outermost portion of the teeth. It is a protective shell of sorts that guards teeth against decay. Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the body. You read that right. Tooth enamel is even stronger than the bones in your body. The primary purpose of tooth enamel is to guard the teeth against damage.
While enamel is incredibly strong, it is not indestructible. It is possible for your tooth enamel to crack or chip. The plaque will stick to enamel, allowing damaging bacteria to thrive. The bacteria transforms sugar in food into acid that wears away at the enamel.
Enamel is Fallible
Tooth enamel has the ability to repair itself. This repair process occurs with minerals within saliva and the fluoride from toothpaste. However, enamel can gradually weaken as time progresses, becoming easier to destroy. This is when cavities form.
Thankfully, you can take some steps to keep your tooth enamel strong and healthy. Brush twice a day and floss once a day, use products with fluoride, reduce your consumption of sugary drinks/foods and increase your intake of food with calcium. Calcium combats harmful acid in the mouth that can otherwise cause decay.
It is particularly interesting to note the frequency of alterations in pH rather than the level of change that is the primary factor in tooth decay risk. Thus, it is not so much about the amount of sugar as it is about the frequency at which someone consumes it. In a nutshell, your tooth enamel is better served by enjoying your sugary delights at the same time instead of grazing on them across the entirety of the day.
Additional Risks for Tooth Enamel Erosion
Aside from the threats noted above, those who grind their teeth or clench their teeth face a heightened risk of enamel erosion. Acid erosion along with abrasion really are legitimate threats to tooth enamel. Do your best to use a soft-bristled toothbrush several times per day to prevent the destruction of your tooth enamel.
Rebuilding Tooth Enamel
It is possible to repair tooth enamel through improved diet and oral hygiene routine. As long as the enamel does not break down to the level of the dentin, a dentist can help you re-strengthen this important portion of your teeth. The dentist will guard the remaining structure with crowns, fillings and additional types of dental restorations.
You can do your part to strengthen your tooth enamel by being proactive in terms of oral hygiene and diet. Visit your dentist once every six months for a thorough cleaning. Brush your teeth after each meal with a fluoridated toothpaste. Floss after each meal as well. Select your toothpaste with care. Choose a variety that protects tooth enamel from acid and your teeth will prove that much stronger in the long run.
Request a dental check-up here: https://www.smilesinpa.com or call Jenny Chen Pediatric and Family Dentistry at (610) 400-1588 for an appointment in our West Grove dental office.
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