Is Acid Reflux Damaging Your Teeth?
Have you noticed yellowing or sensitive teeth? If you suffer from acid reflux, this could be a sign that this common condition is affecting your oral health.
When left untreated, acid reflux can damage your teeth and gums permanently. Fortunately, this tooth erosion can be prevented. You just need to know which daily habits you need to change.
Here is what you need to know about acid reflux and teeth damage from your dentists at Parkland Mall Dental Centre in Red Deer!
What Is Acid Reflux?
Your stomach produces acids that aid in digestion, but this acid can sometimes travel up your throat and into your mouth. Normally, this is a rare event, and the acid is neutralized by your saliva. However, those who suffer from acid reflux or GERD may find this to be a common occurrence that happens every day.
Acid reflux typically happens after a large meal, after eating certain trigger foods, or when lying down or bending forward. When researching acid reflux and your teeth, you'll find that acid reflux is especially harmful at night when we create less saliva and lie down for long periods of time.
Does Acid Reflux Affect Teeth and Gums?
Over time, the acids that travel into your mouth can erode your teeth, causing pain and sensitivity while increasing your risk of cavities. It can also cause your gums to recede. In extreme cases, you may experience tooth loss.
If you have other oral health disorders, the erosion of your teeth may become accelerated. For example, acid reflux and teeth grinding can both wear down the tooth enamel and may require cosmetic services to address the damage.
Tooth erosion is permanent but getting a routine dental exam can allow your dentist to detect signs of erosion due to acid reflux. This will allow you to take preventative measures before fillings, root canals, or veneers are necessary.
Relieving Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is often caused by consuming acidic foods such as tomatoes and citrus fruits like orange or lemon. Cutting these foods out of your diet along with carbonated beverages can help alleviate your acid reflux. It’s best to consult a dietician for additional tips on creating a diet that alleviates your acid reflux.
You can also help relieve your acid reflux by avoiding lying down right after meals, eating smaller portions, and not snacking before you go to sleep. Over-the-counter medication also offers temporary relief and you should speak with your family doctor before taking anything new.
To lessen the impact of acid reflux on your teeth, we recommend:
- Drink plenty of water
- Sip acidic beverages through a straw
- Brush regularly with a fluoride toothpaste or a toothpaste such as renamel
- Chewing a sugar-free gum can increase your saliva production, causing the acid to be neutralized easily
Concerned About Tooth Erosion Caused by Acid Reflux? Schedule a Visit at Parkland Mall Dental Centre!
Now that you know more about acid reflux and your oral health, you're better equipped to tackle the problem as soon as you notice it! If you're dealing with tooth damage due to acid reflux, please don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment at Parkland Mall Dental Centre in Red Deer.