Welcome to Julian Webber's blog where he muses on a range of topics including some of his most interesting cases,
stories from his travels, the latest from the clinic and news on our Saving Teeth Awareness Campaign.

Wear and tear

Not so long ago, it was predicted that with the advent of fluoride toothpaste and improved care of our teeth, dentists would become redundant.  But those predictions proved wrong, very wrong. Not only do we have more dentists in the UK than 20 years ago, but there are new conditions emerging for the profession to contend with.

One of those conditions is tooth wear. The causes are multi-factorial. Teeth can be worn down by grinding or clenching, known as bruxism, a feature of stress; or by acids in the diet or from acid reflux due to a health problem or bulimia; or thirdly, through abrasion from a coarse diet or vigorous tooth-brushing. More often than not, it’s from a combination of two or even three of those factors.

My colleague Professor Andrew Eder is an authority on tooth wear and I’m full of admiration for the work he is doing to raise awareness of the condition.

I ask him if it’s possible that the increase in tooth wear can be reversed?   He tells me it’s unlikely, since stress is almost unavoidable. Furthermore, erosion is also associated with modern lifestyles and high standards of living and is seen in people who drink a lot of wine, have unusual diets or are dedicated athletes.

All we can do is make sure our patients understand how they can keep the impact of tooth wear to a minimum, which is exactly what Professor Eder and the London Tooth Wear Centre® are doing.

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