The Truth About Acid Reflux and Your Teeth From our Dental Office

Posted on: January 1, 2016

Dental OfficeIn our dental office, we help patients that suffer from acid reflux disease and are dealing with tooth erosion as a result.  Reflux-induced erosion is a common problem that can impact both children and adults.  As acid travels up through the esophagus, it enters the mouth and can start to attack the teeth.  The acid will start to wear away the teeth one layer at a time until they become thin and brittle.

According to a report by the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project between twenty and thirty percent of U.S. adults, experience the symptoms of acid reflux or GERD on a weekly basis.  A full sixty percent of the population has these symptoms at least yearly.  This manifests as a burning sensation in the chest and throat as acid works its way backwards and up the esophagus. This proves problematic for many people, making it difficult to eat and sleep along with interfering with their concentration at work. Acid reflux also creates health problems in the stomach, esophagus and throat in addition to impacting the teeth.

In our dental office, we want to know if our patients have acid reflux so that we can help to prevent erosion in addition to treating it.  By keeping teeth healthy and clean, they will remain stronger.  For example, people that have cavities or gum disease will naturally be more susceptible to getting cavities and suffering other dental health issues. While cleaning teeth, we can remove bacteria from the teeth and gum lines so that they can remain healthy and cavity free.  We can also provide a fluoride treatment for teeth that need strengthening and are at risk for erosion. These preventative steps aid in keeping the mouth healthy.

If the erosion does occur, it will first attack the enamel and cause it to wear away.  As it does, the dentin underneath will become exposed which leads to sensitive teeth.  When food touches the dentin it is simultaneously touching the nerve endings inside of it.  This can lead to the pain signal being transferred to the brain, leading to an increase in sensitivity that many patients complain of.  In this early stage, we can help by completing a bonding procedure to seal the dentin.  This works well in the beginning stages but as erosion becomes more advanced; the teeth will become weak, thin and brittle.  At this point, the best way to protect the teeth is to place a crown around them.  A crown is a cap that surrounds the tooth and prevents anything from touching it.  This procedure allows us to save a tooth that may have otherwise been pulled due to erosion.

In our dental office, we also recommend that patients take medication to control their acid reflux.  By seeing your doctor, you can get a prescription that will help you to feel better and to protect your teeth.  If an attack does occur, you should avoid brushing your teeth for an hour, but be sure to rinse your mouth in order to neutralize some of the acid.

  >  

Related Posts

August 15, 2016

A Dentist in Newtown Shares Facts About Dental Care That You Should Know

As a dentist in Newtown, we believe that our patients should be informed about dental care. We believe that once people understand the basics of dental care, they can make an educated decision about their …

September 15, 2016

Why Regular Visits to Your Newtown Dentist Matters

While not having your teeth cared for can lead to a variety of future problems, many people still do not grasp the importance of regular trips to your Newtown dentist. A dentist can help you …

November 22, 2018

5 Reasons to Use Mouthwash

You have been taught since you were table high, that brushing your teeth twice a day, in the morning and before going to bed is the ultimate way to keep your oral health in order. …

May 2, 2018

7 Reasons Dental Health Is So Important

Dental health is important for reasons beyond having a lovely-looking smile. Visit with an experienced dentist and you will find he or she can tell a lot about your overarching health based on the condition …