How to Prevent Enamel Erosion
When it comes to oral health, tooth enamel has a big job to do. Enamel is the semi-transparent, hard outer shell that protects your child’s teeth. If the enamel starts to wear down, teeth become susceptible to cavities and decay. To help ensure your child’s dental health, there are a few precautions you should take to prevent enamel erosion.
It’s safe to say that most children have a sweet tooth. But, too many sweets can eat away at your child’s enamel. That’s because naturally occurring bacteria in the mouth love sugar. Unfortunately, the bacteria produce acid as a byproduct, which can break down tooth enamel. So, be safe and only dole out sweets in moderation.
Limit Acidic Food
Sour candies, fruit juices, and sodas – these foods and beverages all contain a high level of acidity. And while they’re okay to eat or drink on special occasions, consuming them on a daily basis can lead to enamel erosion. Even chewable Vitamin C tablets can eat away at enamel over time. Like sweets, be sure to moderate acidic foods. However, when your child does have acidic foods, have them rinse their mouth with water to get rid of some of the acidic food particles that might remain on their teeth otherwise.
Take Care with Brushing
To promote good dental hygiene and prevent enamel erosion, your child should brush their teeth twice a day. However, make sure they don’t brush right after eating acidic foods or drinking an acidic beverage. Doing so will only advance enamel erosion. Have them wait at least an hour before brushing. Also, be sure to teach your child the right way to brush, morning and night. They should use a soft toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. And, make sure that they’re not brushing too hard.
Prevent Dry Mouth
Saliva plays an important role in combating tooth erosion. It helps clear away bacteria and any leftover food particles, and it can help neutralize acids. But, if your child isn’t producing enough saliva, it can’t do its job. When your child experiences dry mouth, it could be that they’re dehydrated. Encourage them to drink lots of non-acidic beverages, like water. Dry mouth can also be caused by certain conditions and medications. So, if dry mouth persists, you should discuss your concerns with a doctor or dentist.
Put an End to Teeth Grinding
Many kids grind their teeth – a condition known as bruxism. While sleeping or in stressful situations, a child may gnash their teeth for a variety of reasons. It could be caused by a misalignment of teeth or as a coping mechanism. They may even grind their teeth in response to pain. Whatever the reason, bruxism can wear down enamel. If you’re concerned about your child’s oral health, speak with your dentist. They may prescribe a night guard or outline ways you can put an end to the grinding once and for all.
Seeing the dentist for checkups on a regular basis is vital to promoting good dental hygiene. If you’re searching for a pediatric dentist in Annapolis, Maryland, look no further than Tooth Fairy Smiles. We provide a wide array of services, from fluoride applications to child-centered education, to help build a solid foundation for a lifetime of good oral hygiene. Schedule an appointment today.