Treatment Options for Hypoplastic and Hypocalcified Permanent Molars in Children Painful tooth sensitivity caused by these enamel defects is a main target for treatment Theodore P. Croll, DDS Molars that are malformed due to enamel hypoplasia, enamel hypocalcification, or amelogenesis imperfecta routinely challenge dentists who treat children. Patients with these conditions often complain about tooth sensitivity because abnormal or missing enamel can mean vital dentin may not be insulated from the stimuli associated with cold or hot food or liquids, sweet foods, or air. The resulting tooth sensitivity can be a continuing source of discomfort for the patient. Definitions and Diagnosis The nomenclature regarding malformed teeth can be confusing. Enamel hypoplasia is generally defined as a defect in the enamel characterized by a lack of tooth contact, a rapid breakdown of the occlusal surfaces, and a yellowish-brown stain where the dentin is exposed.
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What Is Hypocalcification? White discoloration appears when acidic conditions in the mouth dissolve the calcium in the tooth enamel and cause it to leach out. Another cause of low levels of calcium in tooth enamel is the genetic disease amelogenesis imperfecta.
Read on to learn more about the causes, complications and treatment options for weakened enamel. Inherited Condition Amelogenesis imperfecta is an inherited condition that affects the teeth and causes weakened enamel. The National Organization for Rare Disorders estimates that about one in 14, to 16, American children has amelogenesis imperfecta. Calcium Loss Acids from mouth bacteria or acidic foods or drinks break down the calcium in tooth enamel. The first signs of calcium loss are white spots or stains on teeth because the structure of the enamel has changed.
Hypocalcified enamel is more porous and chalky than healthy enamel. When left untreated, the calcium loss continues, the enamel breaks down entirely, and a cavity appears. Poor oral care is often to blame for demineralization of tooth enamel.
Patients who have their braces removed after orthodontic treatment might see white spots where the braces were attached to their teeth. White patches on teeth can also seem to appear after teeth whitening treatments , but in fact the treatments only make the condition more noticeable. Hypocalcification Treatments Finding the cause of the hypocalcification provides the best guide to the correct treatment.
When the calcium loss is due to acid attacks, the enamel may respond to remineralization through pastes, creams or fluoride treatments, preventing further calcium loss and cavity development. In amelogenesis imperfecta patients, hypocalcification cannot be cured, but dentists can provide artificial replacements for the unhealthy enamel.
Full crown restorations or specialized dentures for defective teeth cover and protect the dentin, preventing decay and relieving the tooth sensitivity patients with this condition often experience.
Tooth enamel provides the best protection for teeth, and losing calcium sends a warning signal that the enamel is becoming weaker. If a dentist can catch the problem in time, he or she can stop it from developing into something more serious. If you notice white spots or patches on your teeth, book an appointment with your dentist to have them checked out and treated, and to ask for advice on how to prevent them from reoccurring. This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics.
It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.
Hypocalcification, Chalky White Spot
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What is Enamel Hypocalcification & How to Treat It?
Hypocalcification, Chalky Spot What causes hypocalcification, chalky spot? Normal teeth have an extremely hard protective covering called enamel which helps protect the pulp inside the tooth from harm. The pulp consists of a tiny artery, vein, and nerve encapsulated by a thin membrane within the pulp chamber inside the tooth. The hard covering of the tooth surface comes from the minerals such as calcium phosphate and hydroxy apatite which make up the enamel.