As my Grandma used to say: “If I had a nickel for every time I heard that, I’d be rich!” As a Dentist with many years experience behind the chair, I can say that one thing I hear about frequently is when a patient shares how often they experience sensitive teeth. It’s a consistent problem across all age groups and with patients in either excellent or poor health. Sensitive teeth can be a real area of concern and impact our enjoyment of food and beverages and therefore, in my humble opinion – can really impact our enjoyment of life! Today we’ll address how you might help prevent sensitive teeth from ruining your next meal!
Some of the causes of sensitive teeth include:
- Worn tooth enamel from using a hard toothbrush and/or literally brushing too hard.
- Tooth erosion caused by highly acidic foods and beverages.
- Tooth decay, and concerns like older fillings that are leaky or cracked.
- Broken or chipped teeth that expose the dentin of your tooth.
- Grinding your teeth (bruxism) can also lead to more sensitive teeth.
What can you do help reduce tooth sensitivity?
- There are of course a variety of toothpastes that specialize in helping to moderate sensitive teeth. Typically we wouldn’t recommend one brand over another but rather, encourage you to try out several, for a good stretch of time (2 – 3 weeks minimum) to see if any work well for you.
- You might consider reducing your consumption of particularly highly acidic foods that are known to cause pain.
- Take care in how you brush – switch to a soft-bristled brush and consider brushing a little less vigorously overall. You can still get the job done with a “slow and steady” approach, brushing doesn’t have to be harsh to help.
- For some people, using a mouthwash daily can help.
- You might consider a fluoride treatment to help strengthen teeth.
- Bonding is another possible solution although this is likely only recommended if your tooth sensitivity is really impacting your quality of life.
- Finally, it may not be a preferred option for some but avoiding the foods that cause pain and/or reducing the extreme temperature fluctuations that sometimes result in sensitivity might also help. In other words, have that cup of coffee just a degree or two cooler!
I’d like to be rich but I would much rather have patients who are comfortable! If you’ve tried some of these remedies and they aren’t working for you, book a visit with our family friendly dental team here at Brinkley. Let us help “get to the root of the problem!” (Pun intended!) As always, thanks for reading and remember: “don’t forget to be a BFFwith your mouth and Brush that SMILE!”