If you’ve noticed some white, brown or yellow stains on your teeth and opaqueness on the tooth enamel, you could have a case of hypocalcification. These chalky spots and/or stains that occur due to hypocalcification may lead to discolouration and trigger tooth decay.
There are several factors that can cause this dental condition. In today’s post, we’ll discuss enamel hypocalcification, its causes and its treatment.
What is Enamel?
Our tooth has several layers. The inner tooth pulp consists of nerve, vein, and artery encapsulated within the pulp chamber. Enamel is the hard external protective covering of the teeth that protects the tooth from bacterial damages.
What is Enamel Hypocalcification?
Tooth enamel is made up of minerals like calcium phosphate and hydroxy apatite. A lesser concentration of these minerals on some areas of the tooth leads to chalky spots on the dental crown. This condition is known as enamel hypocalcification.
Some of the most common reasons behind hypocalcification of the tooth enamel are loss of calcium due to excessive acidic conditions in the mouth cavity and defect in enamel formation during tooth development. Here’s more detail about these causes:
- Calcium Loss: Acidic foods and acid formed by mouth bacteria can wear out calcium in tooth enamel. This affects and changes the structure of the enamel, making the specific affected areas of the tooth weak and porous. When you leave it untreated, the calcium breaks down further causing permanent enamel damage and tooth cavity.
- Defective Enamel Formation: It’s an inherited dental condition may cause poor enamel formation in primary and adult teeth. Ameloblasts are cells responsible for the secretion of enamel proteins during tooth development. These proteins later mineralize to form tooth enamel. The lack of sufficient ameloblasts impedes normal enamel formation. Known as Amelogenesis imperfecta, this defect makes the enamel form a very thin protective layer over the dentin instead of a hard covering, eventually leading to hypocalcification.
Treatment for Enamel Hypocalcification
Hypocalcified teeth require attention to avoid rapid tooth decay. You should never delay treatment. Visit a dentist immediately if you identify any symptoms of hypocalcification. Depending on the actual cause and severity of your case, a dentist will advise a treatment and remedies suitable for you.
For mild cases where your enamel is slightly affected, your dentist may suggest to maintain a proper oral care regime and limit the consumption of acidic and sugary foods that lead to enamel wear. He/she may also recommend specially formulated toothpaste to replenish the lost minerals to prevent cavities.
If the stains have affected only the cosmetic appearance of your teeth, the dentist may suggest tooth bleaching to improve its look. If the discolouration is severe, he/she may advise applying a dental filling in the affected areas.
Hypocalcification caused by Amelogenesis imperfecta can’t be cured. In such cases, a dentist may suggest specialized dentures or crown restorations to cover the affected teeth.
Patients often confuse hypocalcification with decalcification of teeth because their symptoms are similar. Only a dentist can correctly diagnose your dental condition and provide proper treatment to restore your smile.
Remember that tooth enamel protects your teeth and the weakening of enamel can lead to serious dental issues. If you notice any abnormality in the appearance of your teeth, book an appointment with a dentist in brampton and ask for advice immediately!