Understanding Tooth Wear

Tooth wear is a dental condition where the surface and structure of teeth are progressively reduced as a result of internal and/or external forces placed upon them.

When hard tooth material is worn away as a result of teeth grinding and/or clenching, it is called attrition. The extent of wear damage depends on the amount of grinding, and is typically more severe in individuals who exhibit this behavior in their sleep.

The reduction of hard tooth material due to chemical forces is called erosion. It can be caused by drinking acidic beverages like soda, or by medical conditions like acid reflux or bulimia. Over time, this acid dissolves the outer enamel of the teeth and can expose the softer underlying dentin layer.

Wear caused an outside object is called abrasion. Abrasion can be caused by improper tooth brushing technique, excessive use of toothpicks, and the use of the teeth as a tool.

Abrasion can also result in grooves and notches in the enamel that can also expose the dentin

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