If you have ever been interested in nature or science, you might have heard of erosion. In nature, you might think of a mountain standing tall, seemingly indestructible. Decades can pass, and it looks like the mountain is the same. However, a timelapse of the mountain shows that its shape changes. Ridges go missing, and crevices form. The changes occur because of erosion. As the weather alters and rocks fall, the surface of the mountain changes.
This same process can happen to your teeth. Your enamel is an incredibly strong substance—the strongest in your body. In fact, it protects your teeth from harmful bacteria and the impact of chewing and speaking. However, the use of your teeth and your diet can erode your enamel.
Just as the mountain changes, so do your teeth. The protective layer of the enamel slowly disappears, and the shape of your teeth can alter as well. When the enamel is no longer strong enough, your teeth can become more susceptible to tooth decay.
Enamel and Tooth Decay
Your enamel is responsible for keeping your teeth strong and healthy. If it is damaged, it can no longer protect your teeth. The enamel keeps harmful bacteria and other substances from damaging your teeth.
Once the enamel wears away, your teeth no longer have a protective barrier from harmful bacteria. This means that you are more likely to develop cavities and more advanced tooth decay.
Tooth decay can range from small cavities to crumbling or missing teeth. Your teeth need enamel to keep their shape and structure. Unfortunately, physical and chemical erosion can diminish its abilities.
Not only do worn teeth increase the likelihood of tooth decay, but they can also significantly affect the shape of your teeth. This means that your teeth can become smaller and less effective over time.
Solutions for Worn Teeth
If you have worn teeth, it is important to find a solution. Otherwise, you might suffer from many more dental issues in the future. Your dentist can offer several ways to improve and support your smile.
Dental bonding is a type of composite resin that your dentist can use to protect your teeth. If the wear on your teeth is mild to moderate, your dentist may use dental bonding as an enamel substitute.
Because of its flexible nature, dental bonding is an easy solution, especially if the area of wear doesn’t receive a high impact. While dental bonding is a great option, it is not as durable as other solutions. Therefore, dentists typically use it for cosmetic purposes.
Another way to change the shape and structure of your smile is to use dental veneers. Veneers are thin, wafer-like shells that your dentist will place on the front of your teeth. Generally, veneers are made of porcelain, which is a good substitute for enamel. Dental veneers can give you a brand-new smile.
If the wear and tear are on your premolars or molars, your dentist may suggest a crown. A dental crown is a porcelain cap for your teeth. These appliances are incredibly durable and likely to solve your wear and tear issues.