16 May Teeth Wear
Research has shown that tooth wear (particularly concerning the front teeth) seems to be on the rise. Tooth wear has usually been a problem associated with older patients, often caused by dry mouth or prescription drugs but now the problem is becoming more evident in younger people.
Treatments often involve either prevention of further wear using night-time guards/splints or by rebuilding the teeth using modern Porcelain Technologies such as Emax Crowns or Enamic Onlays. In this before and after photo below, this patient had treatment to rebuild the worn teeth using six front teeth Emax Crowns and Lower Back Teeth had Enamic Onlays to reestablish the correct vertical height of the bite..
In modern Dentistry, Tooth Wear is assessed and the re-building of the teeth is planned in 3d computer software as shown in the image below in which the above patient had the six Emax Porcelain Crowns and the Lower Back Teeth onlays designed on the computer software and then 3d printing established a real trial set of teeth. In the firs timage below, the new design of crowns on the front teeth are see through to be able to see the original worn tooth position.
Tooth wear in younger patients has been linked to the following causes.
Teeth Grinding due to position of teeth
Acidic beverages-high consumption of soft drinks or energy drinks
Digestive disorders- stomach acids coming into contact with the teeth
Lifestyle including the use of recreational drugs.
Tooth wear can cause a range of problems from cosmetic to functional. The wearing of the teeth will often cause sensitivity issues and sometimes decreased chewing ability. Whilst these symptoms need to be treated it is often the aesthetic issues that cause more problems. The negative effect of tooth wear often effect confidence, create appearance issues and often permanent damage to the teeth.
The good news is that your dentist can help tooth wear. By assessing your lifestyle and establishing the root cause for of your tooth wear the dentist can devise a plan to help. The assessment will involve looking at key factors of your lifestyle. For example they will look at a patients’ individual diet to determine if high amounts of acid are responsible for the decay. Secondly they will investigate any underlying health problems which could be causing a dry mouth which in turn accelerates tooth wear.
Once the problem has been pinpointed it is essential to make lifestyle changes to ensure this does not continue to happen. If we look after our teeth properly we can ensure they last us a long time. To deal with tooth wear which has already occurred the dentist will use aesthetic treatments to enhance the appearance of worn surfaces.