Did you know that every one of your teeth is comprised of different layers? As you might imagine, the deeper you go into a tooth, the more sensitive and vulnerable the dental structure is.
Dental enamel is the outermost layer of any tooth, and as such, it serves as a protective layer. However, enamel is by no means unbreakable. Keep reading to learn more from our Elmhurst dentists…
A number of different issues can thin and weaken enamel:
- Bruxism: this condition is characterized by chronic dental grinding and clenching. Bruxism can manifest during the day or at night while the patient is asleep.
- Abrasive substances: if you habitually chomp on hard candies or ice, this can create micro-cracks in your dental enamel. Over time, these weak spots can become wider and deeper, while accumulating dental debris and bacteria.
- Sugary and acidic treats: acidic substances temporarily weaken dental enamel, and leave it susceptible to damage. Additionally, oral bacteria produce acids as they feed on sugars and refined carbohydrates. All of these things contribute to dental enamel de-mineralization.
As your dental enamel is diminished you may notice
- Increased dental sensitivity: dentin and dental pulp are more sensitive than dental enamel. So, as your enamel becomes more porous, you’ll likely experience more tooth sensitivity than normal.
- Yellow or dull looking teeth: because dentin is yellower than healthy enamel, your entire tooth can start to look discolored as more dentin is able to show through the thin enamel layer that covers it.
- More cavities: thin dental enamel is not as effective as healthy enamel at protecting the inner tooth from bacteria. Thus, as your enamel becomes weaker, you’ll likely experience an increase in cavity development and dental damage.
No matter what your teeth look like today, our Elmhurst dentists can help you achieve a smile that you’ll love to show off in the future. The best way to get started is to schedule a personal consultation with our dental team—give us a call or use the Contact Us page to reach out!