How Heartburn Can Ruin Your Teeth

At first it may seem that heartburn has nothing to do with your teeth. After all, the burning sensation is in your chest, not your mouth. But repeated instances of heartburn can actually cause erosion and staining of the teeth.

When your stomach produces a large amount of acid in order to digest a hard-to-digest meal it can sometimes make its way up the esophagus and into the mouth. The stomach acids are powerful and cause a burning sensation in the esophagus, which is felt as pain in the chest.

This rising of the stomach acid up the esophagus is a condition known as acid reflux. When this condition is chronic it’s called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD for short).

Once the condition is chronic it can cause damage to the teeth. The constant acid rising into the mouth from the stomach erodes the tooth enamel at an alarming rate.

In addition to getting treated for GERD, people suffering from the disease should consider avoiding brushing the teeth right after an episode of heartburn. Brushing while the enamel is weakened from the acid will wear it away even worse than just the acid would.

Additionally, chewing sugarless gum has shown to reduce the chance of heartburn, as well as stimulate the production of saliva to neutralize the acid in the mouth and remineralize the tooth enamel.