Brushing your teeth daily is part of proper dental care; however, it is possible that brushing improperly or brushing too much can cause dental health problems. Toothbrush abrasion is one condition caused by using hard bristle toothbrushes, brushing too hard or brushing too much. Once the condition is noted, treatment usually consists of using soft toothbrushes and following proper brushing techniques. If the abrasion is severe, cosmetic dentistry to restore the gum line may be required.
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Brushing too hard, using a brush with hard bristles or brushing too frequently can lead to the top layer of your tooth, called the enamel, being rubbed away. Once the enamel is gone, a substance called dentine is exposed. When dentine is exposed, extreme sensitivity may occur. You may notice this sensitivity when you eat or drink hot or cold foods, while brushing your teeth or when anything touches the affected area.
As vigorous brushing wears away your tooth enamel and exposes dentine, you will notice that your teeth start to yellow, especially in the area around the gum line. The areas of yellow are actually where the dentine in your teeth has become exposed. If you notice any yellowing of your teeth near the gum line, you should seek dental care as soon as possible to avoid further damage to your tooth.
Gum Line Recession
Brushing vigorously can cause severe damage to the sensitive gum line. When you are suffering from dental abrasion, you may notice that your gums are higher than normal or that your gum line is pulling away from your teeth. This is due in part to damage to the gums and tooth. You may notice that your gums are red and swollen. In some cases, your gums may bleed.
Tooth Decay and Loss
Severe cases of toothbrush abrasion can lead to holes in the teeth, extreme tooth decay or tooth loss. Once damaging toothbrush habits destroy the enamel of your teeth, you begin to strip away the dentine on your teeth, which may lead to cavities and tooth decay. Once the dentine is worn away, the nerves in your tooth become exposed and you will likely lose your tooth unless your dentist can save your tooth through cosmetic dentistry techniques.
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