Ever experienced sharp pain after enjoying a bite of ice cream or a hot cup of coffee? What about after indulging in a sweet or sour piece of candy? Chances are you have sensitive spots in your teeth.
Why Are My Teeth Sensitive?
Teeth get sensitive for many different reasons, ranging from dental disease to trauma. Sensitivity is most often caused by tooth decay, receding gums or otherwise worn enamel.
Teeth are in trouble when dentin becomes exposed. Dentin is the hardened tissue just beneath the tooth enamel that contains tiny nerve fibers. When dentin is touched by food or drink that is hot, cold, sweet or sour, you can expect to feel some pain.
What Can I Do at Home to Help Relieve the Pain?
- Keep plaque away by brushing and especially flossing regularly. Plaque produces an acid that irritates teeth.
- Avoid brushing for at least an hour after eating or drinking acidic foods or drinks. Doing so decreases the chances of enamel erosion.
- Use a desensitizing toothpaste like Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief, Sensodyne or Crest Pro-Health Sensitive Shield. These tooth pastes contain ingredients that combat sensitivity by filling tiny holes in the dentin.
- Try leaving a dab of toothpaste on sensitive spots before you go to bed. You may spit, but don’t rinse. Within a few weeks your teeth might feel less sensitive.
- Use a soft toothbrush. It doesn’t take firm bristles to get the job done when it comes to tooth brushing. Too much force can damage gums and tooth enamel. A lighter touch can actually make your brushing more effective by allowing the bristles to move more freely than when pressed down flat against teeth.
Some sensitivity resolves on its own, but if it persists, you should make an appointment with a dentist to have your teeth inspected for damage. If you are in the Katy area, contact Dr. Jahangiri and the team at Noble Smile to make an appointment today.