It’s officially summer! The perfect time for ice cream, Popsicles, a slice of cold watermelon and many other delicious cold treats that come with summer. It all sounds amazing unless you have sensitive teeth. Tooth sensitivity can be very painful and cause you to avoid foods and drinks that you use to enjoy.
There are a few common causes for sensitivity
Exposed roots; don’t have any protective surfaces around them other than the gum, so if your gums recede, which can occur naturally with age or occur due to gum disease, the exposed roots can be are quite sensitive to just about anything above or below room temperature.
Worn enamel; enamel is the protective layer around the tooth. When it wears down, it exposes the dentin layer of the tooth. Dentin is very sensitive to temperature changes, acidic foods and sugary foods.
Decay, fractured teeth or infection; if this is the case, call us right away so we can get the tooth restored. One of the reasons it’s so important to see your dentist regularly is that you might not even notice a cavity or a broken tooth, especially if it’s located towards the back of the mouth.
What can I do?
The first step to treating sensitivity is to see your dentist and get a proper diagnosis. Once you’ve ruled out decay, broken teeth or infection there are several different options to try. Starting with the simplest, you should begin brushing your teeth using a very gentle technique twice a day. Aggressive brushing or brushing immediately after eating acidic foods can cause further damage.
Avoid acidic foods and switch to a sensitivity toothpaste such as Sensodyne. You may also need to wear a nightguard if you’ve been grinding or clenching your teeth either during the day or subconsciously while you sleep.
If those techniques don’t alleviate your pain, we can apply a desensitizing agent or small protective fillings may be placed along the gumline of recessed teeth.
With proper care, you’ll be able to drastically reduce your sensitivity.
Oftentimes, patients who experience tooth sensitivity will be afraid to visit the dentist for fear that it will aggravate the condition. Nothing can be further from the truth; modern dentistry is well equipped to handle pain, and by going to the dentist you’ll be saving yourself potentially bigger problems. We’re proud to have an experienced dentist and hygienist who are ready to address any of your concerns or fears about oral pain; you’re in good, caring hands.