Things You Need to Know about Enamel Erosion
Despite being the hardest substance in the human body, tooth enamel can be eroded by acid and leave your teeth vulnerable to cavities.
Here are some important things you should know about enamel erosion:
What does enamel erosion look and feel like?
Enamel erosion causes teeth to yellow and to be sensitive.
What causes enamel erosion?
The primary causes of enamel erosion are the acids contained in the foods and drinks that you consume.
Soft drinks are the most common source of erosive acids, but fruit juice, sports drinks and energy drinks aren’t much better for your child’s teeth.
Can other health issues cause enamel erosion?
If your child suffers from gastro esophageal acid reflux disease (GERD), it can lead to erosion of your child’s tooth enamel by causing stomach acid to resurface involuntarily.
How to avoid acid erosion with your child’s teeth
Here are four good ways to good way to reduce the risk of acid erosion:
- Cut back of the citrus fruits – oranges, lemons, limes – your child eats, as foods and drinks high in citric acid erode tooth enamel in a process called demineralization.
- Have your child drink more water. Not only does water not contain acid, it improves saliva production, which naturally removes debris from teeth and restores the mouth’s healthy ph balance.
In fact, you should encourage your child to rinse her or his mouth out with water after each meal.
- Have your child eat more calcium-rich foods. Calcium is a dental “super mineral,” as it neutralizes damaging acids and protects enamel. Try to add at least one dairy product – like milk or cheese – to each of your child’s meals.
If your family doesn’t consume dairy, try other calcium-rich foods: almond milk, canned fish, kale, soy yogurt or soy beans. If you’re buying packaged food as a calcium source, check the packaging to ensure that there is an adequate amount.
- Make sure your child uses an ADA-approved fluoridated toothpaste, which can strengthen enamel through a process called remineralization.
If you suspect your child might be experiencing enamel erosion, it’s always a smart idea to see you pediatric dentist. If you don’t yet have a pediatric dentist for your child, please use our search page to find a NuSmile pediatric dentist near you..
Find more dental advice below or at mychildrensteeth.org.