Cautionary tale

Dear Animated Teeth team,

Thanks for the best resource I could find up online. Reading got me rid of all the unclarity and helped me accept my situation better.
Sorry that this is going to be a very long text but I really hope you will have a few minutes for reading trough.

My dentist never made me aware of my tooth wear until like 4 years ago, she couldn't understand 'how the hell did I chew off my teeth like that' and after applying a filling that would chip away later did nothing.
I had no teeth sensitivity then or awareness of the teeth wear problem. It might sound weird but I have never looked at my teeth myself and trusted the professional appearing dentist who I would visit every 6 months and would be happy to just get a small filling or two once in a while. I also believed that my teeth care habits are great until my dentist went on a leave and the substitute sent me to an orthodontics specialist who told me that I have heavy wear on all of my teeth and it should be addressed asap. She also said that there is no other way than to get braces (I for sure know that the lower front teeth are leaning back a little and she also said my jaw moved a bit to one side) and 'restore' every tooth. From what I know now I assume she was not suggesting crowns, more like bonding or aesthetic fixing. It will be a complicated proccess and If I will not go for this my teeth will become too short and gums will retract and I will get paradontosis most likely and later on loose teeth and have to get the implants plus the braces! All of this came as a shocker to me. I went to other specialists and most were also surprised by the wear at age 31.

I was also in great belief that I am not a bruxer. I have slept in rooms with other people for all of my life and no one ever said I do grind. My girlfriend who is I believe a tmd sufferer said she didn’t notice me clench in the four months we lived together. The private dentist in London was sure I grind or clench and got me a hard acrylic custom night guard. By now I know that bruxism can occur in very short periods at night so I wear the guard every night.

Could it be possible that my teeth are just weaker or I took worse care of it like skipping fluoride toothpaste for few years or not flossing after I read a silly article on a study that flossing might not work? Or not knowing that acidic food is actually really bad and beers don't help either. Erosion which I knew absolutely nothing about and atrition go hand in hand I heard. I was also never told to see a hygienist in my entire life for some reason. Also can it be because of a habit of chewing food too hard for like 20 times each bite until it turns into liquid form (which I read somehwere years ago and maybe took it too far not knowing teeth actually DO wear)? Also I might have thought that natural teeth position is for them to touch always when my mouth is closed (not sure I executed that at all times). Could it be a combination of all of these things?

Anyway, now I am aware of it and ready to take all possible precautions and lifestyle changes to avoid damage to whatever is left.

After looking through most of the site and responses to comments I have an impression that you would suggests crowns for my case. In London a dentist suggested veneers as the best option which I'm not sure is the best idea after reading. None of them suggested crowns yet. What is your opinion on that?

All of this is constantly floating in my mind making me anxious especially knowing I don't really have the means for the treatment. I will go see an ortho university clinic professor in the end of August and wish to set up a treatment plan.

I am not too concerned about the look of my smile as I never show it anyway but I am afraid of future problems. I would advise anyone who reads this to learn from my mistakes and take their bruxism seriously.

I have uploaded a picture online of my teeth but this comment section does not allow links so if anyone wants to see it please put this link in a new browser window -

Thank you for your attention.

Nerijus M

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