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The Real Squeeze On Lemon
By Dr. Ellison
April 02, 2015
Category: Diet
Tags: erosion   enamel   citric acid   diet  

I recently learned that my granddaughter enjoys eating lemons. You might imagine the near panic I felt when I learned that the lemon wedge her mother puts into her water bottle (in an attempt to naturally flavor and encourage her to drink more water) was actually being consumed. Sucking on lemons (citric acid) can cause erosion of tooth enamel. When enamel is worn away, the dentin underneath is exposed, which can lead to sensitivity and pain.

While it has become an increasingly popular practice among health seekers to drink lemon water, and sometimes hot lemon water, it is a known fact that acidic food and drink can corrode enamel. This creates a rough surface on the tooth. Adding a lemon wedge to your water is fine as long as you don’t suck on it nor is it a good idea to regularly squeeze the lemon juice into the water. I suggested that my granddaughter stick with plain water unless she is willing to end her practice of eating the lemon wedges.

If you already have some erosion of tooth enamel, there are remedies such as sealants, bonding or veneers to protect the existing tooth structure and restore your beautiful smile. Avoid over-brushing or vigorous brushing and using firm pressure. Instead use a soft-bristled brush, applying gentle pressure in a circular motion to effectively remove bacteria and slough the acids off of the tooth surface.