Tooth enamel is the thin, hard, mineral-rich tissue that covers and protects the outside of the tooth. Enamel is not visible to the naked eye. Counter to popular belief, enamel is not responsible for a tooth’s color, but it is essential in protecting teeth from decay.
Half an hour after eating or drinking, your tooth enamel is under attack. As the food is chewed and broken down, bacteria and plaque begin to form in your mouth. When left on the teeth, these substances do real damage to your enamel. Many dental emergencies in the Columbus, Ohio area (or anywhere in the U.S.) can be prevented by taking better care of tooth enamel. For dental care in Columbus, OH, South High Dental is available to help.
What is Tooth Enamel?
Imagine a turtle without a shell. That’s how vulnerable your teeth would be without enamel. Foods high in sugar and starch are especially damaging to tooth enamel, so it’s best to avoid them.
Here are some enamel-damaging foods you’ll want to avoid:
- Energy drinks
- Sports drinks
- Sour candy
- Limes and Lemons
As you can see, many of the foods that make life worth living are enamel killers. The good news is that if you brush your teeth immediately after eating, the effects on tooth enamel are less severe. Talk to your dentist about gentle, effective toothpaste options. Exerting more force while you brush will not help you protect your enamel. Brushing too hard can cause tissue damage and dry mouth. When toothbrush bristles are pressed too hard against teeth, they can’t reach all the crevices where food can get stuck. You’ll definitely want to use a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush gently. At South High Dental, we also offer fluoride treatments to help protect your enamel from the wear and tear of everyday life. Treating dental problems early can drastically reduce the chances of needing more invasive procedures in the future. At South High Dental, we offer both adult and pediatric dentistry services. Treating dental issues isn’t something most people look forward to, but procrastination exacerbates the problem 100% of the time.
More Enamel Destroyers
Acid is extremely damaging to tooth enamel. Most of the acid that comes in contact with our teeth is from the foods we eat, but acid can also come from the stomach. Vomiting brings stomach acid in contact with tooth enamel. Stomach acid is extremely corrosive and harmful to tooth enamel. People with bulimia, alcoholism, and acid reflux are at high-risk for dental problems because acid repeatedly comes in contact with their teeth. Any person who has suffered from bulimia, alcoholism, or acid reflux (even for a short time) will have damage to their enamel.
The following conditions cause damage to tooth enamel:
- Drug addiction
- Celiac disease
Protecting enamel is the first step to protecting your teeth and keeping your smile bright. Long-term effects of certain conditions will destroy your enamel and wreak havoc on your teeth. These permanent conditions include:
- Thin, transparent teeth
- Broken teeth
- Severe decay
- Missing teeth
- Problems chewing
- Altered facial features
- Jaw and tooth pain
Severe enamel damage is followed by serious dental problems. These dental problems require immediate treatment in order to prevent painful and costly treatment options. It is common for people with severe damage to their enamel to need one or more of the following procedures at some point in their lives:
- Root canal
- Dental implants
- Dental Bridge
At South High Dental, we understand that many people get anxious when faced with dental issues. We are committed to keeping our patients comfortable and pain-free during procedures. We offer both General Dentistry and Cosmetic Dentistry services.