The Truth About Tooth Enamel

How many times have you seen commercials advertising a toothpaste that can restore your enamel? More than likely, it’s been too many times to count. We are going to tell you a secret: Enamel cannot be restored. If any product promises to restore or strengthen your enamel, it’s simply not true (though we wish it was!).

Even though enamel cannot be restored, there are several ways to keep your teeth strong and healthy for the future.

What is tooth enamel?

Tooth enamel is a thin layer of minerals that protects the visible part your teeth. It varies in color from mute yellow to dusty white. Despite the small amount of it on each tooth, enamel is extremely hard making it very strong and durable. It’s actually the hardest tissue in the human body!

Enamel protects your teeth from the deteriorating affects of acidic foods and plaque. It also helps protect the inner layers of your teeth that are sensitive to hot and cold food and beverages.

Since enamel is not made up of living cells, your body does not regenerate it once it’s gone. Meaning if your enamel gets damaged or destroyed, it’s impossible to get it back. That is why it’s so important to start taking better care of your enamel sooner rather than later.

Protecting your enamel

The most obvious way to protect the enamel on your teeth is to brush and floss twice a day. Don’t brush harder, brush smarter. All it takes is 2 minutes of gentle brushing to keep your mouth healthy.

 A healthy diet is also a key factor in keeping your enamel strong and healthy. Highly acidic foods and beverages will erode your teeth. Examples of acidic foods include coffee, alcohol, bread, pasta, artificial sweeteners, lemons, and fruit juices. We would never ask you to give up coffee for good, but it’s smart to be aware of how much you’re consuming. If you drink more than a couple cups a day, try cutting back to give your teeth a break from the copious amounts of acid.

Enamel can also be damaged from acid reflux, grinding your teeth, eating disorders such as bulimia, binge drinking, and certain medications. Both physical and mental health have huge impacts on your oral health.

Dental options for damaged enamel

If you do come into the situation where you need your enamel repaired, there are many options to choose from such as bonding, veneers, and crowns.

The bonding process consists of simply using a tooth-colored substance to coat the damaged area. It’s as simple as it sounds! The bonding will become extremely hard, acting as a “new” layer of enamel.

If the front surface of your enamel is damaged, veneers may be an excellent option. Veneers are pieces of tooth-colored porcelain that are cemented to your teeth. They are made specifically to the shape of your teeth to create a perfectly custom fit.

Crowns are an option in fairly advanced cases. They are essentially a tooth colored “cap” that completely covers your tooth. Your tooth will look great and will no longer be in any pain! Crowns are also a great investment as they last about 15-25 years.

Don’t wait before it’s too late

At Light Touch Dental in Toledo, we specialize in protecting your teeth for years to come. Our friendly staff are highly skilled at keeping your smile healthy and beautiful! Learn more about how to keep your enamel strong by calling our office- (419) 866-4271. We can’t wait to hear from you!

 

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