Tooth wear hits the headlines

Tooth wear has hit the headlines at an almost unprecedent level, thanks to the efforts of a team at King’s College London, whose study into sipping acidic drinks such as fruit teas and flavoured water has shown they can damage the enamel.1

Commenting on the research, Professor Andrew Eder, a Specialist in Restorative Dentistry and Prosthodontics and Clinical Director of the London Tooth Wear Centre®, said, ‘This will come as little, if any surprise, to dentists. However, the fact that it has brought the issue into the public eye via media outlets such as the BBC2 and the Daily Mail3 is potentially of great benefit to the oral health of the nation, if dental teams can capitalise on this raised awareness in a timely manner.

‘It is an easy enough topic to bring up in conversation and may open up a further discussion about what patients can do to minimise such damage to the teeth. A suggested in the British Dental Journal article, asking a number of carefully framed questions may help to ascertain the extent of any given patient’s susceptibility to erosion.’

In this regard, O’Toole and Mullan suggest asking the following questions:
1. How many dietary acids are being consumed daily, including fruits, anything with a fruit flavouring, acidic drinks, acidic sweets and medications?
2. How many of these are between meals?
3. Is greater than 10 minutes being spent consuming any dietary acid at a single sitting?
4. Do they sip, swish, hold or rinse the dietary acid in their mouths prior to swallowing?
5. Do they consume dietary acids at an increased temperature, e.g. hot water with lemon, stewed fruits, fruit teas?1

If you consider that a patient may benefit from prevention-led intervention, simple steps that may help include:
• Limit the intake of acidic drinks to meal times
• Rinse the mouth with water for 15 to 30 seconds after consuming acidic drinks
• Chew sugarfree gum or eat a piece of cheese after consuming an acidic drink
• Wait at least an hour to brush teeth after consuming any acidic drinks
• Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride and a non-abrasive toothbrush to clean the teeth at least twice a day
• Use a fluoridated mouthwash every day at a different time to tooth brushing, as well as before or after acidic drinks, to help limit the erosive potential.

If you are concerned about any of your patients, the London Tooth Wear Centre® offers an evidence-based and comprehensive approach to managing tooth wear, using the latest clinical techniques and an holistic approach in a professional and friendly environment.

For further information on the work of the London Tooth Wear Centre®, please visit, email or call 020 7486 7180.

1.O’Tooole S, Mullan F. The role of the diet in tooth wear. British Dental Journal 2018: doi:10.1038/sj.bdj.2018.127
2. Accessed 23 February 2018
3. Accessed 23 February 2018


Send Us Your Smile

    If you are concerned about the possibility of tooth wear and would like to know how best to proceed but are unable to come to the practice right now, there is a new way we can help. Please take a picture of your smile, upload it here and add any comments in the message box below. We will then be in touch with advice to help you.

    Name (required):

    Email (required):


    Send Us Your Smile:


    To prove you're human, please enter the code:

    By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

    Send Us Your Smile

      Name (required):

      Email (required):

      Telephone Number (required):

      Would you like us to contact you to arrange a consultation?


      Send Us Your Smile:

      If you are unable to come to the practice right now, there is a new way we can help. Please take a picture of your smile, upload it here and list any comments you may have in the message box above. We will then be in touch with advice to help you.

      I consent to the storage and handling of my data by LTWC


      To prove you are human please enter the code above:


      By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

      The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.