10 Ways to Prevent Tooth Enamel Loss
Enamel is the semi-transparent outer layer of your teeth that protects the more sensitive dentin and pulp beneath from the acids, chemicals, and temperature extremes your mouth endures when you eat and drink. Even though enamel is the hardest substance in the human body, daily wear and tear can eventually cause the surface of your teeth to wear away. Once you lose tooth enamel, it’s gone for good, so it’s important to do everything you can to protect it! Here’s how.
- Limit acidic foods and drinks: When you eat anything acidic, your tooth enamel softens temporarily and loses some of its mineral content. Your saliva slowly balances out the acidity in your mouth, but if this acid attack happens too often, your mouth may not have time to repair itself before some enamel is brushed away. To prevent this, cut back on alcohol, coffee, tea, soda, sports drinks, tomato sauce, and sour candy.
- Eat less sugar: The bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar, producing acid as a byproduct. This is why juice, candy, and other sweet foods are so bad for your teeth.
- Finish your meal with dairy: Enjoying a glass of milk or a piece of cheese at the end of your meal helps rebalance the acidic pH in your mouth.
- Rinse immediately: If you have a hankering for something sweet or acidic, reduce the damage by rinsing your mouth with water once you finish eating.
- Chew sugar-free gum after meals: Chewing gum stimulates saliva flow, which helps remineralize your enamel. Plus, mint gum freshens your breath, making it a win-win.
- Wait an hour to brush: It may sound counterintuitive, but you shouldn’t brush your teeth right after eating. This is when your enamel is weakest, so wait until it has time to harden again before brushing.
- Brush gently: Unless your dentist recommends otherwise, use a soft-bristled toothbrush. Then, brush gently to remove food particles and plaque without scrubbing enamel away.
- Brush with fluoride toothpaste: Fluoride has the amazing ability to remineralize your teeth, strengthening enamel in the process. That’s why it’s so important to use fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash.
- Wear a mouthguard: Nighttime tooth grinding can wear down your enamel. Ask your dentist about getting a custom mouthguard to protect your teeth while you sleep.
- Work with your dentist: Ultimately, the best way to keep your enamel intact is to visit the dentist regularly. A dental professional can spot early signs of erosion and recommend fluoride treatments, prescription toothpaste, and other personalized solutions to help you preserve your smile.
Ready to team up with the best dentist in New York? Look no further than Park 56 Dental! We can help you prevent tooth enamel loss and recommend dental restorations if your smile needs a boost. All the while, you’ll enjoy personalized, quality dental care in a spa-like environment. To get started, please call us at (212) 826-2322 or contact us online to request your free consultation.
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