The human tooth is covered by a white (sometimes off-white) tissue called the enamel. It is very rich in minerals and it is your teeth’s first level of defense against anything you ingest. Here are some important facts about tooth enamel:
- The enamel is the hardest tissue in the body; tougher even than the bones. Due to frequent wear and tear, however, tooth enamel can erode. Erosion is mostly caused by the consumption of starchy foods, sugary foods, acidic foods, fruit juices, and soda drinks. It may also be caused by teeth grinding, GERD, and xerostomia (a symptom of diabetes).
- If you consume those foods excessively—or suffer from the conditions—the enamel breaks down and loses some of its minerals. Early warning signs of enamel erosion are chip and cracks, increased sensitivity of the teeth, and discoloration. If you notice any of these symptoms for an extended period, seek professional treatment immediately.
- Without treatment, the following complications may arise: yellow/stained teeth, extreme teeth sensitivity, tooth decay, extensive erosion of the enamel, and teeth fracture.
- The enamel has no living cells, so if it erodes completely, it will not grow back. Thankfully, enamel erosion takes very long, giving the patient ample time to visit a dentist and stop the degradation.
- Dental bonding, veneer, or crowns are the most common treatments for extensive enamel erosion.
If you notice cracks/chips in your teeth and you feel a constant sharp pain when you eat hot or cold foods, your enamel may already be breaking down. If you live around West Humble, Texas, visit Lonestar Dental Center for a professional consultation/treatment. Call 281-233-0333 now to make an appointment.