Some individuals suffer from eating disorders like bulimia, or have digestive problems such as acid reflux disease or “GERD”. Dental erosion is also growing at a frightening rate in the United States thanks to the highly acidic and erosive nature of our diets. These problems often cause lose the protective layer of enamel on the teeth. When severe dental erosion occurs, a dentist will recommend reconstruction. If you’re in need of full dental reconstruction in Charlotte, NC, contact Ballantyne Center for Dentistry to make an appointment.
The destructive properties of potent digestive acids as well as sodas, sports drinks, and even vitamin waters can make the teeth much weaker and prone to breaking and chipping. It can also cause tooth sensitivity to temperature and different types of foods that we eat.
When the outside layer of enamel has gone away, the inside layer of the tooth (dentin) is exposed. Dentin is much less dense and vulnerable to cavities, staining, sensitivity, breakage, and wear.
The adjacent pre-treatment photos show how normal wear and tear on biting surfaces become accelerated for people with bulimia, GERD, and highly erosive diets. Nearly all of the teeth are dramatically worn down.
The second picture is a mirrored view of the upper jaw that readily indicates exposed dentin here. The yellowish areas on the backsides of each tooth represent exposed dentin and are what concern us the most.
The next, third photo is a mirrored view of the lower jaw showing more of the same ravages to the teeth. The tooth structures in both pictures with no yellowing or indication of exposed dentin are existing porcelain crowns that a previous dentist did to try to help the problem. This type of wear and tear must be diagnosed as soon as possible in order to get the best results long term.
Our patient, Jennifer, was worried and had forgotten how to smile. She had some very painful experiences in the past at the dentist. Jennifer knew that she had these issues with her teeth.
She had been bulimic for many years when she was much younger. It was during this period that she had lost much of the protective enamel or outer protective covering of her teeth.
Jennifer’s goal was to address the damage caused by her years and years of purging and to also get back a smile and dental function with teeth that were proportionally sized to her smile and jaw structure.
The entire upper arch was treated. Authentic and Empress Brand porcelain crowns were used to change the size of her teeth so they would proportionally fit her face and smile. The fourth, fifth, and sixth photos in this treatment series demonstrate the dramatic results of recreating her smile.
All biting surfaces have been reconstructed, providing the client with a normal bite that she hadn’t had for quite sometime. The premium grade of porcelain materials will assure optimal function and aesthetic appearance for years and years.
Jennifer’s gum tissue was treated as needed with the Waterlase soft tissue laser, to recontour and reshape her gums to produce a natural feeling and appearance.
Creating new gum contours eliminates the problem of having a “gummy smile” that can occur in complex rehabilitation treatment plans. The renowned Waterlase dental laser gives us the degree of precision and control needed to produce the final cosmetic result defined by our patients.
Our last photo shows how incredibly happy Jennifer waswith the outcome of this life changing treatment. Jennifer has been a patient of our practice for many years and her “extreme makeover” is as beautiful today as it was years ago when it was first completed.