Enamel is like the friend you don’t appreciate until it’s gone. It protects your teeth from the hot and the cold, so the least you can do is to protect it from erosion and tooth sensitivity. But if you ignore it, it will go away and never come back, leaving your sensitive dentin exposed. So be a good friend to your enamel and start protecting it with these easy steps.
A great place to start is by being more aware of the acidic food and drinks you’re consuming, and limit how much and when you enjoy them. Foods like citrus fruits and tomatoes or drinks like coffee and orange juice eat away at your enamel. Try to only consume them at mealtimes, and then immediately flush your mouth with water to help protect your enamel. If you can, have a glass of milk or piece of cheese for dessert to neutralize the acid in your meal. If you do choose to brush, wait at least 1 hour after acidic foods or drinks. They tend to soften your enamel, which can make brushing more hurtful than helpful to your teeth. And when you’re enjoying acidic drinks on the go, don’t forget, a straw is always a good idea.
Food is important, but did you know that just simply having a dry mouth could increase the amount of acid in your mouth? Saliva and other liquids rinse away the acids that bacteria produce, protecting your teeth. Got a naturally dry mouth? Just remember to keep water nearby and keep drinking it all day long. Sugar-free gum is also great for a dry mouth, since it causes you to produce saliva, not to mention freshening your breath.
Lastly, make sure your oral hygiene routine is helping your teeth, not hurting them. Always use a soft toothbrush, and don’t brush too hard.