Worn teeth and acid erosion
It is now known that the most people have a habit of clenching, grinding or rubbing their teeth together when they are not thinking about it – either when they are asleep or when they are awake. How common this occurrence is has come as a surprise to researchers, and we are unsure exactly why people do it – though there has been found to be a link between increased stress levels and increased levels of tooth grinding. Sometimes a tooth grinding habit can not lead to any serious problems over a lifetime other than some mild tooth wear. However, as the forces we put through our teeth in this kind of grinding are about 8x more than when we bite into food, there are many cases where problems can occur and intervention with dental treatment is recommended. The effects of tooth grinding may include:
- Pain and sensitivity on biting, or sensitivity to hot or cold
- Hairline fractures of teeth
- Pieces of tooth or filling breaking away
- Severely worn down teeth which can wear down to the nerve of the tooth
- Aches and tension in the facial chewing muscles
- Headaches, particularly soon after waking
Tooth surface loss can also occur from acid erosion. Excess acid in the mouth can come from our diets – citrus fruits and fizzy drinks – or it can come from our stomach acid coming up the throat and into the mouth, known as acid reflux.
Both tooth wear and acid erosion can cause significant damage to the teeth. Catching this problem earlier in your life is better than allowing damage to occur and treating it later. Treatment for this is considered to be complex dentistry for dentists that have a special interest in the area. This is something we are able to treat at Triangle Dental.