How My Teeth Crumbled (and what I hope to do about it)

My teeth have been pretty decent in terms of cavities. I needed a root canal at 3, or at least I got one whether I needed it or not, then really haven’t had any problems with cavities. No serious staining. Dentists have never had a problem.  I brush my teeth once a day at best, never floss, and use mouthwash when I can be bothered to.

But, they’ve also been very bad. Horribly crowded, I still need to wear a retainer to limit how much they push in. My bite is awful (sadly, orthodontia cares more about straight teeth than good bite), and years ago- I developed a tooth sensitivity to sugar.

Yeah, that’s right. Not hot. Not cold. Sugar. I’m not even sure how many years ago, probably over 7 now, my four front, bottom teeth started aching when I bit into sugary sweets. The first time I noticed it was with a Rice Crispy bar (marshmallow covered rice puffs, for anyone unfamiliar with it)- basically as close to pure sugar as you can get. It’s a testament to the severity of my sugar addiction that I kept eating them even though it caused pain so bad that I would spend a few minutes holding my mouth and whimpering. Drinking water (or anything else) to try to rinse it off quicker didn’t help.

My dentist and orthodontist both told me this was impossible- that teeth can’t be sensitive to sugar. No one bothered trying to find a solution. Frankly, it’s very telling that no one said “Maybe you should stop eating so much sugar”- even though this is brilliant health advice.  Now, the idea that teeth can’t be sensitive to sugar is very much untrue. A quick google search tells you that teeth definitely can be sensitive to sugar, given the numerous results you’ll get on that subject- many of them people asking why their teeth hurt when they eat sugar.

But, this was years ago when the internet was young and I wasn’t as familiar with it, so I just continued suffering and eating unhealthy amounts of sugar despite the horrible pain it caused me. I had one heck of a sugar addiction.

Then, 2 or 3 years ago, I looked in the mirror and realized my teeth were crumbling. My front bottom four teeth had visibly crumbled, it looked like someone had taken a file to them. The enamel was gone completely on at least two of them, the dentin was exposed. This was about a year after I went on depo provera, and given how hormones can effect tooth health, I now wonder if there’s any relation- but I really don’t know.

Due to money, I wasn’t able to get to a dentist until last year- where the problem was diagnosed as tooth grinding, and I was told there was nothing I could do about it besides wearing a mouth guard at night (I had been for years) and trying to stop grinding my teeth. But even if I did stop grinding my teeth, caps would do nothing for me. I was doomed to have crumbled teeth forever.

At first I accepted this. I groused about what a poor design choice it is that our teeth could be forever destroyed like this, but that was it.

Then I randomly stumbled on a post that talked about tooth remineralization and curing cavities. I have no idea if it’ll work for the damage my teeth have, but it’s worth a try, isn’t it?

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