How Can You Protect Your Enamel?
Good dental care at home and the dentist’s office is the best way to keep your mouth healthy. Make it a point to:
- Cut down on acidic drinks and foods, like sodas and citrus fruits and juices. When you do have something with acid, have it at mealtimes to make it easier on your enamel. You can also switch to products like low-acid orange juice.
- Rinse your mouth with water right after you eat or drink something acidic.
- Use a straw for sodas and fruit juices so they bypass the teeth. Don’t swish them around in your mouth.
- Finish a meal with a glass of milk or a piece of cheese to cancel out acids.
- Chew sugar-free gum with xylitol, which lowers the amount of acid in your mouth. Gum also helps you make more saliva, which strengthens your teeth with key minerals.
- Drink more water during the day if you have dry mouth.
- Use a soft toothbrush, and try not to brush too hard.
- Wait at least an hour to brush after you've had acidic foods or drinks. They soften the enamel and make it more prone to damage from your toothbrush.
- Use fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash. Your dentist can tell you which products can protect your teeth and make them less sensitive.
- Get treatment for conditions like bulimia, alcoholism, or GERD.
Can Damaged Tooth Enamel Be Repaired?
If you’ve lost some enamel, there are ways to fix it. The best approach depends on your problem.
Tooth bonding can protect a damaged tooth and cover teeth that are worn down, chipped, or discolored.
If you’ve lost a lot of that outer shell, your dentist may cover the tooth with a crown to protect it from further damage.