Recovering from Bulimia with a Beautiful Smile
Bulimics have a special place in our hearts, and we have successfully provided dentistry for bulimics for many years. The compassion and gentle care they receive at Total Health Dentistry of Encino, CA gives them the support they need to restore their mouths to complete health and beauty as they recover from bulimia nervosa, a psychiatric disorder characterized by self-induced vomiting.
If you engage in self-induced vomiting, stomach acids brought up into the mouth may erode the enamel surface of your teeth, primarily on the inside and biting surfaces of your teeth. The extent of the erosion is based on how frequently and how long your teeth have been exposed to gastric acid.
As acid erodes enamel, teeth can become more sensitive to hot and cold foods, beverages, and air temperatures. When enamel is lost, teeth are more susceptible to developing cavities, chipping, and breaking. They lose their shine and become discolored. Acid erosion reduces the size of teeth as well.
“The good news is that bulimics who are in recovery can have their teeth restored,” says dentist Dr. Isaac Comfortes of Encino, CA. “I can help them regain comfortable function and a beautiful smile. And because we are dedicated to helping people improve their whole health, we will cheer on their efforts to remain in recovery from bulimia nervosa and help them access the medical and psychiatric resources they may need.”
Dental treatments that restore healthy smiles for people who have suffered bulimia come in three forms.
- One option is to bond tooth-colored, composite resin to tooth surfaces. This is a temporary solution, as the composite will not hold up well over time.
- If acid erosion is significant most dentists recommend crowning each tooth. And while this can be aesthetically well done, this type of treatment requires the dentist to remove a significant amount of the tooth structure. In the case of maxillary (upper) incisors and cuspids—the teeth most greatly affected by bulimia, prepping them for crowns can weaken them more.
- There is a more conservative approach that was developed by Dr. Comfortes to help his patients preserve more of the natural tooth structure of their maxillary incisors and cuspids. And that method is a dual-treatment method using porcelain veneers and cast gold inlays. Dr. Comfortes strengthens the back side of each tooth with a cast gold inlay. He then places a porcelain veneer that duplicates the appearance of healthy tooth enamel on the front of the teeth, wrapping slightly over the incisal edge of the teeth so the gold does not show when they smile.
The gold inlays provide long-lasting strength and can be expected to last 20 to 30 years. Porcelain veneers provide natural tooth aesthetics and come in a range of colors to match the surrounding teeth. In the following three photos, you can see six teeth that have been restored by using Dr. Comfortes’s conservative protocol. Read Restoration of Eroded Teeth and Bulimia Smile Makeovers.
Would you like to know what is possible for you?
There is no time like today to start learning about your oral health and improving your quality of life with the help of a dentist who has expertise in treating acid-eroded teeth and who genuinely cares about what you have suffered. Give us a call to schedule your consultation. Dr. Isaac Comfortes looks forward to helping you overcome embarrassment with your smile and the tooth sensitivity and fragility that is hurting your quality of life.
Every patient is different and a custom solution can be designed specifically for your needs and goals. Dr. Comfortes is known for fine dentistry that lasts and his compassionate approach to patient-centered care.