In the world of dentistry, biocorrosion refers to a loss of enamel and dentin caused by acids in the mouth.
The outermost layer of the teeth is made of an extremely strong substance known as enamel. Enamel plays an important role in protecting the teeth from damage. In fact, it is the hardest substance in the body. While enamel helps keep the inner layers of the teeth unharmed, unfortunately, it is not immune to damage. Frequent acid attacks caused by certain foods and drinks can wear away at the outer layer of the teeth, gradually causing them to erode and weaken over time. This process, which is sometimes known as biocorrosion, can lead to a range of issues, including gum line notching and environmental damage to the tooth root surfaces. Read on to find out more about these problems and what you can do to prevent them…
What is gum line notching?
Gum line notching is a very common condition that affects a lot of people. It refers to a loss of tooth structure right above the gum line. It can occur on both the upper and lower teeth. Notching can cause cosmetic concerns in the area between the tooth and gum because of discoloration, but the issue often goes beyond aesthetics. When there is a loss of tooth structure in this area, it can lead to uncomfortable sensitivity, especially in response to hot and cold temperatures. It can also compromise the overall integrity of the tooth structure quite considerably.
What causes gum line notching?
Gum line notching is often the result of gum recession, which exposes the surface of the roots to the oral environment. The root surfaces of the teeth are not protected by enamel, which means that if these areas are exposed, they become extremely vulnerable to environmental conditions. When the root surfaces are exposed, they can be negatively affected by a number of factors, including the force of chewing; acids produced by the stomach, such as in the case of acid reflux; acids from the foods and drinks that we consume; and even certain additives found in toothpaste and other oral health products.
How can you deal with the issue?
In order to prevent biocorrosion and issues like gum line notching and environmental damage to the tooth-root surfaces, it is advisable that you practice proper oral hygiene every day. It includes brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste every day and flossing daily.
It is also a good idea to be mindful of your dietary choices. Try to avoid particularly acidic foods and drinks that can lead to dental erosion, and opt instead for plenty of whole foods. Try to drink water throughout the day to stay hydrated and to keep your mouth clean. Tap water is ideal as most sources contain fluoride, which helps to strengthen the enamel, making it more resistant to acid attacks.
To keep your teeth and gums in optimal condition, it is important that you see your dentist for regular check-ups. When your dentist examines your mouth, they will check for damage to the teeth just above the gum line. If any damage is identified, they will recommend a treatment best suited to your needs in order to repair your teeth and protect them from further damage.
How can we help?
At Elite Dental of Staten Island, we understand that your overall health, as well as your lifestyle choices, have an important impact on your oral health. We encourage all of our patients to come in and see us for regular consultations so that we can help to maintain your general wellness and keep issues like gum line notching and other problems at bay.
To find out more about the range of services we offer at Elite Dental of Staten Island, please have a look here.
If you would like to arrange an appointment, please give us a call at (718) 370 1200 or get in touch with us here.