Your enamel is an important part of your teeth, but it can be worn down and eroded over time. You should know what your enamel is, what the consequences are when it is worn down, as well as the ways you can prevent enamel erosion over time and the solutions for eroded enamel in order to keep your teeth in their best shape.  

What Is Enamel?

Enamel is the hardest substance in the body that surrounds every tooth in your mouth. It exists to protect the teeth from everything that is exposed to. It is a mineral and is prone to decay and erosion over time. 

What Happens When It's Worn Down?

Once your enamel has been eroded, you might be experiencing a few of these symptoms. Your teeth will be more sensitive to both hot and cold food or drinks if you have eroded enamel. Your teeth will be weakened and more susceptible to cracking and breaking. On top of that, teeth with eroded enamel are more prone to decay and cavities. One cosmetic symptom of enamel erosion is shiny spots on the teeth.  

How Can I Prevent Enamel Erosion?

There are a number of ways that you can prevent enamel erosion. One way is to be cognizant of when you are drinking or eating acidic beverages or foods. The acid in food and drinks can break the enamel down. Try to use a straw when drinking highly acidic beverages, and try to rinse your mouth after you eat highly acidic foods. Dry mouth can also cause enamel erosion, due to the fact that saliva helps to wash away the acids in your mouth. If you do have dry mouth, try chewing sugar free gum throughout the day and be sure to drink plenty of water. If your dry mouth is severe, you might want to seek out additional medical help. Avoid brushing right after you eat, as this can weaken enamel. You might be genetical prone to weaker enamel, and if that is the cause your enamel will slowly break down over time even if you do all that you can to prevent it. 

Solutions For Lost Enamel

Once enamel has been lost, it is gone forever. However, there are a few options to help protect your teeth in the event that enamel has been worn down. One of these options is dental bonding. The dentist will apply resin that has been tinted to match the color of your teeth to your teeth with worn down enamel. Once the resin has been hardened, it will be shaped to match the tooth. This provides a protective outer shell on the tooth that would be otherwise unprotected. For more severe enamel loss the dentist might opt to fit you for a crown, providing full coverage.   

If you think that your enamel has worn down, or if you just want more tips for protecting and maintaining your enamel, visit your dentist for more information.