March 2009
Volume 5, Issue 3

Signs of dental erosion

Some of the typical signs of erosion include:32

  • Broad concavities within smooth surface enamel

  • A smooth silky-glazed appearance to the tooth surface48
  • Cupping of occlusal surfaces, (incisal grooving) with dentin exposure
  • Increased incisal translucency
  • Wear on non-occluding surfaces
  • 'Raised' amalgam restorations
  • Clean, non-tarnished appearance of amalgams
  • Loss of surface characteristics of enamel in young children
  • Preservation of an enamel 'cuff' in gingival crevice is common
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Pulp exposure in primary teeth.
  • Broad concavities within smooth surface enamel
  • A smooth silky-glazed appearance to the tooth surface48
  • Cupping of occlusal surfaces, (incisal grooving) with dentin exposure
  • Increased incisal translucency
  • Wear on non-occluding surfaces
  • 'Raised' amalgam restorations
  • Clean, non-tarnished appearance of amalgams
  • Loss of surface characteristics of enamel in young children
  • Preservation of an enamel 'cuff' in gingival crevice is common
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Pulp exposure in primary teeth.

It is possible that the preserved enamel band along the oral and facial gingival margin is due to plaque remnants acting as a diffusion barrier for acids, or to an acid neutralizing effect of the sulcular fluid.48 As tooth wear progresses, the incisors may appear shorter and there may be chipping along the incisal edges of the tooth.48

In children, the occlusal surfaces of the molars and the palatal surfaces of the upper incisors are the most commonly reported areas with wear.41 But as these areas are also prone to attrition, it may be difficult to distinguish whether any changes are due to erosion or other tooth wear factors.

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