Your smile, like your temporomandibular joint cartilage, is special. And there are many ways you can damage your smile. But, unlike temporomandibular joint cartilage, we can easily repair your smile.
Learn how you can protect your smile–and how we can fix it if it wasn’t protected.
Poor Oral Hygiene
Oral hygiene is one of the most important ways you can protect your smile. If you neglect your oral hygiene, you increase your risk of developing cavities or gum disease that can seriously damage your teeth and gums. Good oral hygiene and regular dental visits can’t guarantee you won’t get decay, but they will lower your risk.
For lost teeth, dental implants make a great replacement.
Failure to Wear a Mouthguard
Even if your sport is described as “non-contact,” you are at a significant risk for dental injuries any time you compete. Teeth can be chipped, broken, and sometimes even knocked out through contact with equipment, other players, or the ground. Prevent damage to your teeth by always wearing a mouthguard.
But even if you damage your teeth in this way, we can probably repair them. Porcelain veneers are a great way to repair chipped teeth. More seriously damaged teeth may require dental crowns. We might be able to re-implant knocked out teeth, but, if not, dental implants can be used to replace them.
For many people, teeth grinding is a stress-related behavior. If you can’t keep your stress under control, your teeth may suffer. But other people just grind their teeth at night because of poor occlusion–the way your teeth fit together–or TMJ.
We can help you protect your teeth with a bite splint or night guard that protects teeth from wear and may even prevent you from grinding teeth.
Smoking can damage your smile in many ways. Smoking stains your teeth, but that’s just the beginning. It can increase your risk of gum disease, leading to tooth loss. And if we try to give you dental implants, it can make them more likely to fail, too.
For smoking-related stains, teeth whitening is a great approach. For badly stained teeth, porcelain veneers can help, but probably are only recommended if you’ve quit. Replacing teeth with dental implants might not be best in this case. Instead, we might recommend dental bridges or removable dentures.
There are many other bad behaviors that can contribute to tooth damage. Using your teeth to open bottles, packages, or even nuts can damage your teeth. Crunching ice is also not good for teeth. Depending on the behavior and how much damage it’s done, we might recommend veneers or crowns. In some cases, orthodontics may even be necessary to reverse tooth movement caused by persistent stresses.
Eating disorders can seriously damage your teeth. Purging behavior such as vomiting can erode your tooth enamel all around, making your smile much more vulnerable to decay, but also making it unattractive and brittle.
Depending on the extent of erosion, we might recommend porcelain veneers or dental crowns.
Another way you can damage your teeth is by working with a dentist who doesn’t give you good results. The results are usually functional, but not all dentists take as much care about the appearance of their restorations.
We can replace unattractive restorations with new, more beautiful ones that match your natural teeth better and have more attractive color, luster, and shape.