Definition: The non-physiologic wearing of the teeth. This can be caused by toothbrushes, hairpins, toothpicks and many more.
Location: Seen in the cervical region on the facial surfaces when caused by a toothbrush. Toothpick abrasion tends to be interproximal. Hairpin abrasion is seen on the incisal edges.
Edge: Well-defined with a portion of tooth missing where the object is frequently placed.
Shape: Toothbrush abrasion – linear. Other abrasion will have the same shape as the object that is wearing away the tooth structure.
Internal: Radiolucent area where tooth structure is missing.
Number: May be single or multiple.
(click image to enlarge)
(left – yellow line showing radiolucent area in cervical region of tooth) (right – without yellow line)
(note the linear radiolucent area on the premolars)
(note the notch between the central incisors due to frequent placement of a toothpick)