The Wearing Away Of Dentin, Your Aging Teeth, And What It Means For Cosmetic Procedures

9 October 2018
 Categories: Dentist, Blog

As you age, the dentin in your teeth wears away. There is nothing to be worried about, since this is completely normal and happens to everyone as they age. However, if you want to correct this or have any other cosmetic dentistry procedures, the thinning dentin may be a problem. Here is what thinning and wearing away of dentin means for your aging teeth, how it can be "fixed," and how it affects other cosmetic dentistry procedures.

​The Wearing away of Dentin

Dentin is the heart of every tooth. It is the material that comprises the layer underneath the enamel of each tooth. As you age, this wears down, and your teeth begin to thin, leaving distinct spaces between your teeth. The result is the appearance of smaller teeth and larger spaces. While your teeth are still reasonably healthy and functional, the teeth will continue to "shrink" until your late seventies, eighties, and early nineties, when your teeth are likely to fall out. You cannot reverse this aging process, but you can hide the gaps and "shrinking" teeth with one of two cosmetic procedures.

​Two Procedures That Reverse the Appearance of Thinning Dentin and Widening Spaces

The two cosmetic procedures that can change the appearance of the affects of thinning dentin are veneers and crowns. Veneers completely hide your natural teeth. The veneers are also crafted to be wider than your teeth to cover the widening gaps in your teeth that come with this aging process. The veneers are all uniform in shape too, which makes your smile look even more perfect than it ever did. The crowns are typically used for your molars, which not only helps the visible molars look better, but also prevents cavities and tooth damage from getting worse.

​Implications for Other Cosmetic Procedures

While you can still have your teeth whitened if you want, it is actually not a good idea when the dentin of your teeth has already worn away so much. The whitening agents can wear away a little more of the dentin, which might not be a side effect you are willing to live with. Dental implants are an option, but not until you either lose a tooth, or the dentin of your teeth have worn away so much that there is room in your mouth to insert an implant. To make space for the implant in your jaw, you will also have to wear braces for a while, but then the dentist can make it happen.