The signs of dental attrition  include:

  • Flattening of back teeth, the tooth appears flat
  • Shortening of teeth with flat tooth surfaces 
  • teeth wears accordingly with the opposing teeth 
  • Yellowing of the of teeth
  • cracking of teeth and restorations
  • Teeth may be painless or sensitive, when involves the nerve sensitivty and pain can be associated 

What causes dental attrition?

  • Attrition is the wearing down of teeth and/or restorations due to tooth to tooth contact.
  • It occurs when opposing teeth contact for long periods of time and with higher pressures than normal.
  • Squeezing the teeth together is called clenching.
  • Grinding the teeth together is called bruxing. ( night grinding )
  • may occur during sleep and so many patients are unaware. 
  • attrition can be  as tooth wear progressively .
  • attrition can also occur due to stress, can be related to home ,work or envioronmental .

Treatment for attrition

The most common treatment for bruxism is a customized “bite guard”.


  • Avoid excessive use of chewing 
  • If you are aware of clenching your teeth together, try to reduce this habit
  • Identify whether, why THIS CLENCHING  is occurring. could be due to tension, bite discrepancies, habits or neurological . Depending on the cause involved , counselling, exercises, medication, splint therapy 
  • in most instant cases we do offer habit breaking appliances such an occlusal splints,mouthgaurd or night gaurd .this appliance prevents teeth from coming in contact with each other .helps in reduction of wear and tear of teeth . 
  • it would be worn according to the advise of the dentist .
attrition of lower incisors


dental abrasion

  • Wearing of teeth will appear usually at sides of teeth
  • Frequently recession of gum tissue  of the tooth root
  • The pattern of the wear will match according to patients habit 
  • Teeth may be sensitive depending on the degree of wear
  • Most frequently abrasion is associated with overzealous(aggresive) tooth brushing ,abrasive toothpastes,hard bristles of tooth brush 

What causes dental abrasion

Abrasion is the loss of tooth structure by mechanical forces from a foreign element. If this force begins at the cementoenamel junction, then progression of tooth loss can be rapid since enamel is very thin in this region of the tooth. Once past the enamel, abrasion quickly destroys the softer dentin and cementum structures.

Possible sources of this wearing of tooth are toothbrushestoothpicksfloss.The appearance is commonly described as V-shaped when caused by excessive pressure during tooth brushing.

The teeth most commonly affected are premolars and canines.


  • patient can have senstivity of tooth on hot and cold .
  • if the abrasion is severe it could lead to pain .          


  • removal of underlying cause 
  • restoration with tooth coloured composites
  • seek advise from your dentist                        

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