Although it’s invisible to the naked eye, the strongest substance in the human body is found on the outside of your teeth. This thin layer, known as tooth enamel, protects the nerves and pulp inside your teeth. As strong as this layer may be, acid can weaken and erode it over time. This puts your teeth at risk for increased sensitivity and decay. Since tooth enamel can’t regenerate, this dentist stresses the importance of preventing acid erosion by following these five tips.
Avoid Acidic Foods & Beverages
When possible, limit your consumption of foods and drinks with high levels of acid. Low-pH foods like citrus fruits, pickles, and cranberries are some of the most common causes of acid erosion. You should also limit the amount of coffee and alcohol you drink, as these beverages contain tooth enamel-eroding acids. You don’t have to eliminate these items from your diet—instead, try to mix them with nuts, beans, apples, and cheese. These products have a higher pH and can neutralize the acid.
Drink More Water & Milk
If you need a substitute for your morning glass of juice or coffee, drink more water. Not only does this essential beverage keep you hydrated, but it also rinses acids and food particles from the mouth. Dentists also recommend drinking milk, as the calcium helps strengthen teeth and bones, making your whole mouth healthier.
Treat Acid Reflux
Tooth Enamel-harming acid doesn’t always come from the foods you eat; sometimes, the fluids in your stomach lead to erosion. If you have indigestion, stomach acids may travel up your esophagus and into your mouth where they can harm tooth enamel. Over-the-counter antacids can help treat occasional indigestion, but if it’s a regular problem, talk to your doctor about solutions that can keep it from occurring.
Use a Fluoridated Toothpaste
Brushing twice a day is essential to protecting your mouth from cavity-causing bacteria. Using toothpaste that contains fluoride can even help minimize damage to your tooth enamel and reduce sensitivity. Remember to brush gently—too much pressure can worsen existing erosion.
Chew Sugar-Free Gum
When dry mouth leaves you without saliva, you become more vulnerable to tooth decay and acid erosion. Chewing sugar-free gum throughout the day stimulates saliva production and provides your mouth with a natural rinse.
If you’re worried about the state of your tooth enamel or are experiencing signs of tooth sensitivity, it’s important to visit a dentist for help. Glen Lake Family Dentistry is a trusted resource for all your oral health needs, offering both general and cosmetic dentistry services. From teeth whitening to tooth extractions, we provide the care you need for a smile that feels and looks great. Established in Minnetonka’s small enclave of Glen Lake nearly 60 years ago, Glen Lake Family Dentistry has stood the test of time and evolving technology to bring you the best in comprehensive, state-of-the-art dental care. The highly trained and experienced team of doctor, hygienists and office staff have a reputation for giving patients the best possible experience, whether they come in for a cleaning, a crown, or a full restoration. Focusing on preventative, cosmetic and family dentistry, the Glen Lake Family Dentistry team is passionate about providing comprehensive dental care for all ages. To schedule an appointment, call (952)-938-6038. Visit their website to learn more about their services.