Most St. Louis residents don’t often think of a tooth as a body part that fluctuates in strength. Our teeth seem to have a steady hardness and dependably grind food whenever we need them. However, teeth are dynamic organisms with chemical processes that occur continually.
The protective enamel that covers the softer interior is made of minerals. Enamel demineralizes (loses some of its density) when coming in contact with acids. Saliva can dilute and neutralize acid so the tooth can remineralize (re-harden). This process isn’t instantaneous, however. While the enamel is soft, the tooth is vulnerable to losing a microscopic outer layer of enamel. If the erosion continues, the much softer dentin is exposed. Eventually, the tooth may need to be extracted.
At Koch Park Dental – Martin L. Buchheit, DDS, we are noticing an increase in cases of serious acid erosion. It is apparent that the typical St. Louis diet is becoming more acidic.
The list of acidic foods may surprise you. They include eggs, gravy, asparagus, chicken, cottage cheese, honey, fish, ham, butter, sour cream, aged cheese, and yogurt with active cultures. Generally, food with a high sugar or artificial sweetener content are highly acidic.
Now let’s talk about drinks. You probably already know that soda pop and wine are not good for your teeth. St. Louis teens that sip soda all day can have acid erosion while their young teeth should be at their strongest. In addition to soda, energy drinks are very popular in Missouri and St. Louis cosmetic dentists are noticing the effects on their dental patients’ tooth enamel.
If you drink soda or energy drinks often, you may want to drink water or chew sugarless gum after downing a can. Stimulating saliva production can speed up the remineralization process.
If your teeth have become more sensitive in general, or in response to hot or cold foods or beverages, you may have acid erosion. To schedule an examination with Martin Buchheit at Koch Park Dental – Martin L. Buchheit, DDS, call 314-837-7744 today.
We are a full-service dental office with hundreds of satisfied patients in Florissant, Hazelwood and Maryland Heights We are located at 2149 Charbonier Rd. in Florissant. We are working to raise awareness of the oral health dangers of acid erosion. We hope you have benefited from this Koch Park Dental – Martin L. Buchheit, DDS blog article and look forward to your visit.