Dissolution of Teeth

“Hi there,

I have recently started to have a very disconcerting problem. I usually do not get cavities, as I am very circumspect in my dental hygiene. However, in the past six months, I had three teeth break off partially. It was just little bits of the cusps form the crowns of the teeth, but sometimes quite a large chunk of the tooth would just literally fall off. My teeth are also covered in tiny white splotches. They don’t do anything, but they appear all over my teeth, sometimes they disappear and then reappear again, usually on teeth that do end up breaking over time. What are they? I am sure they are linked somehow, but are they?

Maggie”

dissolution teeth
Dissolution of Teeth

Dear Maggie,

Your instincts are that of a true dentist. You have guessed correctly, the fact that your teeth are breaking and the white spots are related indeed. These white splotches are called white spot lesions, and are signs of demineralization of the teeth. Your teeth are being leached of minerals, and possibly because of a systemic bacterial infection in your mouth. You see, the minerals in your teeth can be dissolved with acids produced by carb eating bacteria, and this will cause white spots to appear on the enamel, where the minerals are missing. Since you take care of your teeth, these white spots disappear from time to time as the bacteria is removed and the acid is gone, and then they are remineralized by the toothpaste you use, and possibly your diet. This is why they disappear and reappear again and again. As for your teeth breaking, that is definitely a sign of an infection. This infection eats away at the inside of your teeth, and your teeth end up breaking when their internal structures become compromised. So you definitely have problems in your mouth.

But what is your dentist doing with all of this? When pieces of your tooth break off, you need to go to a dentist, and the tooth needs to be either root canaled, crowned if too much of the cusps break off, and possibly extracted and replaced with a dental implant. The fact that your teeth are covered in white spot lesions means you have some kind of bacterial presence in your mouth, despite your circumspect oral hygiene routine. Either that or you have lifestyle habits that are causing the destruction of your teeth. You need to get some fluoride foam, gel or ointment and place it on your teeth in order to save them from breaking in the future. You also need to get rid of whatever is causing the white spots to appear in the first place. This could be improper nutrition as well, or could be a result from vinegary foods or smoking or drinking alcohol as well.    

My guess is that you have not been to the dentist for a very long time. and have several teeth that need to be root canaled, and you are just rigorously tending to teeth that are possibly dead, or at the very least badly damaged and in need of a dentist. Go and see one immediately. Thank you.

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