Have you ever sipped a cold drink or eaten ice cream and experienced a brief, sharp pain in your teeth? This sensation could occur during brushing or eating as well. Living with sensitive teeth can bring unexpected, unpleasant surprises — and can also indicate dental problems that could get worse.If you are living with sensitive teeth, you and your dentist both have some options for treating them. If treatment at home doesn’t help or if the pain becomes more severe, then it’s time for your dentist to offer you some solutions.
Desensitizing ToothpasteWhen shopping for toothpaste, you’ll notice a number of brands having options for sensitive teeth. These work by using ingredients that block pain signals to the tooth’s nerve. Different brands can include different ingredients, some more effective than others. Stannous fluoride is considered by many to be the most effective one for blocking pain, so check the box before you buy.
Fluoride TreatmentSince tooth sensitivity can be caused by weak or worn enamel, using fluoride to strengthen it can lead to reduced pain. This is a great option, as it works to correct the problem instead of only treating the symptom. These treatments can range from fluoride-enriched mouthwash to custom dental trays. Did you know fluoride isn’t very effective via toothpaste? Your teeth develop what’s called biofilm, and brushing helps to remove this. This biofilm reduces the amount of fluoride your teeth can absorb, so the best time to apply it is after brushing. Once your teeth have biofilm removed and are clean, use mouthwash or a solution from your dentist immediately afterward to obtain the best results.
Avoid Highly-Acidic FoodsCertain foods and drinks contain high levels of acid that can erode tooth enamel. If you’re working on reducing sensitivity in your teeth, it’s smart to avoid highly-acidic foods and beverages, such as:
- Soft drinks
- Fruit juice
- Citrus fruits