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Enamel Hypoplasia: Definition, Symptoms and Treatment

October 22, 2018

Enamel Hypoplasia is a developmental defect of the teeth in which the enamel is hard but thin and deficient, which leaves teeth vulnerable to damage and decay. The enamel is the hard, outermost layer that protects the sensitive inner layers of your teeth. When enamel is developing in the mouth, different factors can cause a problem in the normal process causing areas of the enamel underdeveloped.

Enamel Hypoplasia often takes the form of pits, white spots, and grooves across the surface of your teeth. Depending on the severity, Enamel Hypoplasia can look like a small groove in the tooth, or take up several teeth in the oral cavity. Other symptoms include yellowish-brown stains, susceptibility to acids or sensitivity, higher risk of developing decay, sensitivity to cold and heat, the irregular wearing of teeth and lack of tooth contact.

The cause of enamel hypoplasia can be either hereditary or environmental. Hereditary syndromes such as Usher, Ellis-van Creveld, Seckel, Heimler and Velocardiofacial syndrome can cause enamel hypoplasia. On the other hand, prenatal issues such as premature birth, maternal smoking, drug use and maternal vitamin D deficiency can lead to environmental enamel hypoplasia. Trauma to the teeth, calcium deficiency, jaundice and infection are also environmental factors that contribute to the development of enamel hypoplasia.

Treating Enamel Hypoplasia depends on the severity of the condition and the cause of the problem. Early detection of the problem is crucial in determining treatment management. Your dentist might recommend the use of fluoride to decrease the risk of tooth decay. Teeth may also need filling materials, bonding, crowns and use of a mouthguard at night to prevent tooth wear. The goals of treatment mainly focus on maintaining a good bite, preserving tooth structure, preventing tooth decay, and keeping teeth look best.

If you have any questions about Enamel Hypoplasia, please feel free to contact or visit us our office in the Toronto Beaches. Here at Toronto Beach Dental, we offer services that can help manage enamel hypoplasia, from crowns, bonding to use of dental fillings.

-Dr. Jay Rabinovich

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