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The Susceptibility to Dental Erosion Differs among Individuals


Studies of wine tasters and patients with self-induced vomiting have revealed that 30-50% of individuals at high risk do not develop erosive lesions. The aim was to investigate this apparent individual susceptibility to enamel erosion. Two enamel specimens were made from each of 3 premolars from 8 persons (donors). Six acrylic mouth appliances were worn by 6 volunteers (carriers). One specimen from each donor was mounted on each appliance. The carriers wore the appliances for 9 days. The appliances were immersed in 0.01 M HCl for 3 min twice per day to imitate a vomiting/reflux situation. The enamel specimens were analysed by a white-light interferometer to measure enamel loss (in micrometres). The enamel loss varied significantly both between the donor teeth (p = 0.009) and the carriers (p = 0.004). The lesion in the specimen with the largest amount of enamel loss was 4 times as deep as in the specimen with the lowest. In 1 carrier, all specimens displayed enamel loss above the mean, including the specimen from the donor with the most resistant enamel. The variation in susceptibility to erosion among individuals appears to be influenced both by the sustainability of the enamel and by factors in the oral environment. This could explain the variation in prevalence and severity of dental erosions among patients exposed to similar acidic challenges. The results suggest that for certain individuals, only minimal acidic challenges may be sufficient to cause damage to the teeth, while others may never develop dental erosions despite extensive exposure to acid.


Academic article




  • Marte-Mari Nordsetmoen Uhlen
  • Aida Mulic
  • Børge Holme
  • Anne Bjørg Tveit
  • Kjersti Refsholt Stenhagen


  • University of Oslo
  • SINTEF Industry / Materials and Nanotechnology



Published in

Caries Research








117 - 123

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