Why Do My Teeth Keep Breaking?
At Whitehorse Dental, we understand how inhibiting brittle, breaking teeth can be on your lifestyle. Frequent dentist visits for fillings and repairs can cost you a lot of time and money. And living with the daily fear of cracking or chipping your teeth can restrict you from eating your favourite foods.
If you have weak teeth that are brittle and break – you don’t have to live with it.
In this article, we explain the main reason why teeth weaken. We also share the long term solutions our experienced dentists can offer you to return your mouth to a happy, healthy state.
WHY DO MY TEETH FEEL WEAK?
When your teeth become worn and brittle, they become more vulnerable to chipping and cracking. Your teeth and their surrounding enamel are built tough. But, there are several contributing factors to the breakdown of their structure.
POOR ORAL CARE
Your mouth collects a lot of bacteria. Whilst some of this bacteria contributes to the healthy flora of your mouth, some of it can be harmful if left unattended to. You can remove most of these bad bacteria by practising great oral hygiene at home, and visiting your dentist for professional check-ups and cleans.
Failure to maintain good oral care can result in the dissolving of your enamel. It can also lead to dental cavities caused by decay. And both the thinning of your enamel and the onset of decay can lead to the weakening of your teeth over time.
Teeth grinding, also known as Bruxism, is very common and directly linked to the weakening of teeth. Some may clench their teeth throughout the day, whilst others, clench and grind their teeth during their sleep.
This subconscious clenching and grinding places excessive and consistent force on your teeth. Over time, it wears down the layers of your teeth making them less resistant to any kind of pressure and impact. This increases your likelihood of experiencing tooth breakage.
Unsure if you grind your teeth? Make an appointment with one of our gentle dentists. We know all the tell-tale signs of teeth grinding and can recommend the perfect treatment plan for you.
As it does with most things, age takes its toll on your teeth. As you get older, there is no avoiding your teeth becoming worn down from the many years of use.
Of course, teeth that have been around for longer have also had more exposure to some or all the things that can cause them to weaken. For example, repeated filling procedures, tooth decay and damage from acidic drinks (lemon water, soft drink, juice, etc).
OVERUSE OF FILLINGS
Unfortunately in our industry, we see the overuse of dental fillings to ‘remedy’ damaged teeth. If you find yourself visiting the dentist every year or two for new fillings, this too is leading to the weakening of your teeth.
If your tooth has gone through years of repeat fillings, it will contain more filling material than natural tooth. The definition of a filling is that it fills a hole in the tooth. Most long-lasting fillings only fill in a small hole in the tooth, so there’s plenty of the original tooth surrounding the filling to provide structural support.
A hole that is bigger than 50% of your tooth leads to your tooth being significantly weakened. The remaining bits of tooth structure supporting the filling become thin and brittle, like an eggshell. A filling, in this case, does nothing to protect the vulnerable, thin outer layers of your tooth. And the larger your filling becomes, the thinner and weaker the rest of your tooth gets.
THE BEST METHOD FOR TREATING BREAKING TEETH
At Whitehorse Dental, we don’t make use of the outdated “drill and fill” method for fixing breaking teeth. Sometimes, what these teeth need is strengthening and protection from a different procedure: a crown.
A crown is a bit like a helmet for your tooth. It covers the tooth and protects the insides from fracturing. Dental crowns are great for restoring teeth to their full strength. This allows you to chew with peace of mind, without the worries of breaking off a piece of tooth.
One of the biggest concerns for a dental procedure like a crown is the expense. Crowns do require a higher initial investment than a large filling. But since teeth with large fillings often require re-filling every few years, over time the cost of all the fillings adds up to be many times more than a crown.
Crown treatments can last over 12 years with proper regular preventative care. Whereas large fillings may need to be redone every few years. In addition to this, the overuse of fillings can result in your tooth becoming so damaged that more complicated treatments like root canal or extractions are eventually needed.
OUR LONG-TERM APPROACH
At our practice, we genuinely care. We are committed to providing beneficial, long term solutions for our patients, rather than quick fixes.
When you come into our clinic to have a filling done or a broken tooth repaired, our dentists will brainstorm the big picture. This includes identifying the root cause/s of the problem and how we can best prevent further damage in the future.
We treat the mouth as a whole, rather than focus on the one or two problem teeth alone. This approach is referred to as preventative dentistry.
At our family dental clinic in Blackburn, we take this dental philosophy one step further. We prioritise treatments that will last at least 10 years with regular preventative care. We aim for your teeth to be better and stronger in 10 years than they are now. This is the type of dental service you deserve, the same kind we’d like for our family and friends.
You don’t have to suffer from breaking teeth. We’d love to help you restore your teeth, confidence and ability to live your life without inhibition.
Get in touch with our friendly team today and find out how we can make your teeth healthy and strong again!