Oops! Dental Injuries are Often No Accident.
- Posted on: Sep 30 2017
A dental injury, such as breaking a tooth mid-way through a bowl of popcorn, is an unpleasant surprise. This experience feels like an accident, at best. At worst, it can feel unnerving. Teeth are resilient! Our teeth have been biting and chewing all kinds of foods for many, many years. Why would one fail us now? As confusing as a cracked or broken tooth may seem, an underlying cause can usually be found. We’ll take a look at two here.
It’s What’s in the Mouth
There is a lot going on in the average mouth. Thousands of bacteria call this space home. This is why there is such a high priority placed on daily brushing and flossing habits. Here’s the process: bacteria live in the mouth. We eat and drink, which lays debris onto teeth and other surfaces. Bacteria then eat. After a satisfying meal, every one of the bacteria in the mouth will deposit acidic byproduct wherever they are. Acidic byproduct on enamel will cause weakness. This may lead to a cavity, or it may cause the tooth to break when you bite on a hard piece of food. It’s pretty simple.
What to do: Brush! The way to reduce the amount of acidity in the mouth is to brush morning and night. Two minutes; no less. Also, a sip of water every few minutes throughout the day washes residue from teeth and interrupts the formation of plaque, which harbors bacteria.
It’s What’s in Daily Life
We all face a certain amount of stress every day. We often think we are accustomed to the stressors that trigger tension; but we’re not. The effects of stress show up physically in the form of headaches, muscle pain, heart disease and, yes, broken teeth. The way that stress is often worked out is in the mouth; with clenching and grinding. This happens when we sleep, so there may be only subtle clues to this problem until a major break happens. Clenching and grinding are a threat to the integrity of teeth, as well as to the gums and to the jaw itself.
What to do: One of the ways dental injury from bruxism can be prevented is by developing strategies for stress management. An immediate step toward prevention is to see your dentist for a custom night guard.
Posted in: Dental Health