Why Are My Teeth Starting to Look Worn Down?

Most people know or have heard about tooth decay; however, the teeth can wear down for a number of reasons. Even people with very healthy teeth (who do not suffer from tooth decay) can still experience Worn Teeth.

Dental wear is different to tooth decay; and can lead to the teeth becoming significantly damaged or sensitive over time.


Loss Of Tooth Surface: How Does it Happen?

(1) Erosion: Loss of the tooth surface by a chemical processes. An example would be acidic drinks. When the mouth’s ability or the natural defense mechanism (via saliva) is too great to neutralise an acidic environment loss of tooth structure can occur.

(2) Attrition: Tooth structure loss by wear of the tooth or a restoration surface caused by

tooth-to-tooth contact during functional (day-to-day habits) or parafunctional (night-time grinding) activity of the teeth.

(3) Abrasion: Loss of tooth surface caused by the frictional action of a foreign substance on the

teeth (other than tooth-to-tooth contact). For example excessive and repetitive force or a hard bristle toothbrush.

(4) Abfraction: Micro-chipping or loss of substance due to flexture via the long axis of the tooth, and stresses + loss

of substance occuring at the point of flexure. This typically occurs during grinding activity or due to trauma.


Factors Which May be Related to Wear

– Grinding (Night time wear)

– Habits (Nervous picking, daily clinching)

– Acidic Diet (Sport & Energy Drinks)

– Eating disorders (Bulimia)

– Reflux disease (Morning Sickness)

– Environmental

– Salivary factors

– Developmental or Genetic Factors


What Can Be Done To Limit Tooth Wear

– First would be to consider the acidity of your drink. Highly acidic drinks should be consumed with caution; or having a glass of water after an acid drink would be recommended to neutralise any acidity.

– Chewing gum can help reduce the acidity within the mouth by promoting more salvia formation, helping neutralise any acid.

– If you are a night grinder, consider a night time retainer

– Be aware of any habits or environmental factors which may damage the teeth

– If you are taking medication that limit or decrease your saliva production considering a prevention plan would be ideal


If you wish for more information please do not hesitate to contact Skygate Dental today on (07) 3114 1199.