A Trip To Our Family Dentistry Office Can Keep Your Teeth Free From Erosion Damage

Family Dentistry
Acid reflux can damage your teeth and as a family dentistry office, we can help. Our goal is to keep our patients in excellent oral health.  The best way, to do so, is with ongoing preventative care.  We typically recommend that patients have their teeth cleaned at least twice a year.  It should be even more frequently for those that suffer from acid reflux.  If your reflux is not under control, you may want to visit our office every quarter.  This allows us to clean your teeth and to identify any early signs of erosion.  If we identify any, we can provide prompt treatment prior to it causing significant discomfort. 

Reflux-erosion is a serious condition that is caused by acid reflux.  As the acid comes up from your stomach and sits on your teeth, the enamel on the surface can start to erode or wear away.  This is problematic because the enamel is in place to protect the tooth structure.  Underneath of it is dentin, a porous material that contains your nerve endings.  When exposed, food and drinks can touch the nerve endings and send pain signals to your brain, creating immediate discomfort.  

In our family dentistry office, we can protect exposed dentin by completing a bonding procedure to seal it.  This way nothing can touch the nerve endings directly.  This is effective for minor damage and the results are instantaneous.  When erosion has further impacted the teeth, part of the bone can be lost, and the overall tooth structure impacted.  This creates additional problems as people can suffer from holes in their teeth and teeth that are so brittle they become cracked or chipped.  In this scenario, a simple bonding procedure will not be sufficient.  Instead, a dental crown is typically the best solution.  A crown works well because it surrounds all sides of the tooth, preventing anything from touching the tooth directly.  This way when you eat and drink, the crown receives the impact, and the damaged tooth underneath will not feel anything.  This procedure is effective at eliminating the discomfort caused by erosion. 

In addition to visiting our family dentistry office, there are things that you can do at home to prevent reflux-induced erosion.  After an acid attack rinse your mouth with water immediately.  This will help to wash away the acid that is trying to attack your teeth.  Do not brush though.  You need to wait an hour before brushing your teeth since your teeth are susceptible to further damage immediately after.  When brushing, use a soft toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste in order to strengthen and protect teeth without eroding the enamel further. 

You should also visit your family doctor and have them prescribe you medication that can be taken to reduce or eliminate your acid reflux condition. Adjusting your diet to cut out spicy and acidic foods may also help.  Pay attention to what you eat and eliminate any foods that are known to create discomfort.  

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