Damage to your teeth can be caused by any process that results in loss of strength of the tooth surface. Tooth decay is a bacteria caused form. The other forms of tooth damage are the result of mechanical or chemical assault to the tooth structure which may be brought about by your own daily habits.
The five major factors that affect the health of your teeth are:
- Oral hygiene
- Grinding and clenching the teeth
- Dry mouth
- Habits that cause severe tooth wear
Believe it or not… No sugar, no decay! This is not to say that sugar is the villain. If you eat sugars only with meals, it does relatively little harm. But almost everyone who is prone to caries has a specific habit in which one form of sugar or another soaks the teeth many, many times a day. These sugar habits account for perhaps 95% of all caries!
The soft sticky mass that builds upon your teeth, which is called “plaque”, is a mass of living organisms. These organisms produce certain acids and specific enzymes, which tend to eat away the gums and underlying bone. This disease process is known as periodontal disease. This process can be prevented simply by removing the plaque from all surfaces of the teeth.
Clenching Or Grinding Your Teeth
Grinding of the teeth with side to side motion is known as bruxing. Everyone does at one time or another, particularly when under stress or in deep concentration. These habits are almost entirely unconscious. Generalized sensitivity to cold foods is a very common symptom of clenching and grinding of the teeth. For this you must consult dentist to prevent damage to the teeth.
Dry mouth, known in dental practice as xerostomia, affects the health of the teeth. A number of conditions and drugs tend to cause dry mouth. This tends to cause overgrowth of microorganisms of plaque over the teeth surfaces, which produce acidic waste products. Of course the acid in plaque is the actual cause of tooth decay. This generally means people with chronic dry mouths tend to have more caries.
Habits that Cause Serious Wear of Teeth
Abrasion or attrition is the mechanical removal of tooth structure due to rubbing of the teeth, either over each other or with excessive or aggressive brushing. Dental attrition is teeth wear acquired when your teeth constantly contact each other. Dental erosion is the superficial loss of tooth surface as a result of chemical process, usually from non-bacterial acids. These acids can be either intrinsic or extrinsic.