A contributing factor to poor dental health is acid erosion, which is just as bad for teeth as sugar. People who do not look out for acid may not realize the damage they’re doing to their teeth or how a few simple steps, included below, can protect their teeth from acid erosion and prevent costly dental care and pain in the future.
Preventing Acid Erosion on Teeth
The first and most important way to prevent acid from eroding your teeth is to avoid consuming food and drink that is acidic or has a high sugar content, which contributes to acid erosion. This includes soda, wine, and candy. If you want to know about how to prevent acid erosion on teeth, it’s important to recognize that things you might consider “healthy” can be bad for your enamel. For example, fruit juice can be quite acidic, especially lemon, cranberry, orange, and apple options. Much fruit juice also contains more sugar than you might expect. Choose low or no-sugar options when you can.
Minimize the Impact of Acid on Your Teeth
You can minimize damage to your teeth after enjoying these drinks by washing them down with water, however. Furthermore, saving these drinks for mealtime will reduce how much of the acidic drink makes contact with your teeth. Do not prolong exposure by sipping these drinks over a long period. You can also consider using a straw to minimize contact with your teeth.
A Note on Brushing Your Teeth
An important aspect of preventing acid erosion to your teeth is the timing of brushing. some people might mistakenly believe that they should brush their teeth immediately after every meal or drink. However, acid softens enamels, so brushing immediately can lead to more damage to your teeth. Wait at least an hour after meals or acidic drinks before brushing your teeth. You can rinse your mouth with water during this time to reduce the impact of acid on your teeth.
Finally, not all acid that can damage your teeth comes from outside your body. Stomach acid can also weaken your enamel, so people with acid reflux or eating disorders should be aware of the risk to their teeth.
Signs of Enamel Damage
How do you know if you have tooth erosion? Signs include tooth sensitivity, discoloration, rounded teeth, translucent appearance, cracks in your teeth, and dents on the chewing surface known as cupping. As enamel erosion continues, it can lead to tooth decay and pain, which is why preventing it in the first case is so important.
If you have any questions about dental health or need to schedule an appointment, contact Mountain View Dental today.