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Worn down teeth

Our teeth wear down as we age but in some cases the wearing of the teeth is so severe that it can adversly affect the individual's dental health and appearance. In these cases, treatment is indicated.

Worn down teeth are caused by a number of reasons. They can be formed as a result of tooth grinding, habits like chewing pens or nails and  hard tooth brushing (dental abrasion and attrition). Worn down teeth can be a direct result of exposing your mouth to acidic foods and drinks too frequently (dental erosion). Often a combination of factors are in play.

An example of tooth enamel wearing down due to acid exposure (dental erosion) 

 

Worn down teeth often mean shorter  teeth affecting the appearance of the lower third of the face and the way you bite together. Restoring the original height of these teeth can sometimes be a lengthy and complicated process. Prevention is of paramount importance and detecting the early signs of tooth wear before the situation is too advanced is vital.

 

Worn Down teeth -Prevention:  

 

Here are some of the preventative measures we may prescribe to minimise tooth wear:

  • Provision of a night guard to stop you grinding at night
  • Recommendation of topical products like fluoride or Tooth Mousse 
  • Frequent sipping of water
  • Investigation and treatment of stomach reflux or any other underlying gastric issues (such as Bullaemia Nervosa) by your GP
  • Investigation and treatment of dry mouth syndrome
  • Correction of tooth brushing technique
  • Correction of other habits such as nail biting

 

An example of tooth brush abrasion

 

Worn down teeth- Treatment

 

Treatment of worn down teeth varies depending on the extent of the damage. However, the underlying causal factor needs to be under control for any treatment to be successful.

The treatment performed may be:

  • Simple fillings
  • Veneers or crowns
  • Full mouth reconstructions
  • Orthodontic treatment

 Needless to say, treatments need to be tailor-made to each individual's unique dental needs.

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