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America May Need a Better Prevention Dental Plan - Tooth Erosion in U.S. Gets Worse

By Susan Braden

family may need affordable dental plan for eroded enamel

No matter what condition your teeth are in, they may still be susceptible to the highly destructive phenomenon of erosion. This condition is best treated when discovered in its early stages, so regular check-ups are important. Therefore, an affordable dental plan may be helpful to patients.

Study Results

In 2004 and 2005, a population-based study was conducted by Dr. Bennett T. Amaechi, M.S., Ph.D, associate professor of community dentistry at the University of Texas Health Science Center. The research plan took place at Indiana University, the University of California at San Francisco, and the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio and involved 900 middle school students. The researchers discovered that 30% of 10-14 year olds in the United States are victims of this condition.

Causes

"This study is important because it confirms our suspicions of the high prevalence of dental erosion in this country and, more importantly, brings awareness ... of its prevalence, causes, prevention and treatment,” Amaechi said. He also explained that the condition is caused by acids in some products that are currently high in consumption. These include:

  • Soft drinks
  • Fruit juices
  • Sports drinks
  • Herbal teas
  • Beer salts
  • The Lucas brand of candy, imported from Mexico

An excess amount of exposure to these products can easily strip the enamel from teeth, therefore causing them to become more brittle and sensitive to pain. Sometimes, the acids in these products are so destructive that not even cavity-causing bacteria can stand up to them.

Even some medications, such as aspirin, could potentially contribute to eroded teeth. Also, underlying medical conditions, including acid reflux disease or disorders such as bulimia, associated with constant vomiting, can erode enamel because of the gastric acids regurgitated into the mouth.

Treatment

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It is important for patients to plan to have access to a cheap dentist, who can detect the signs of this condition before it is too late. "Because dental erosion creates a smooth and shiny appearance of the enamel and causes no pain or sensitivity in its early stages, most patients are not aware that they are suffering from the condition until the problem becomes severe. Therefore, the responsibility of early detection and treatment falls on the professionals," Amaechi said.

According to expert dentists, it is important to treat eroded enamel at its early stages. You may want to investigate an affordable dental plan to save on regular check-ups and to help prevent the erosion of your teeth.

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