Serving areas of Bellevue, Newcastle, and Medina WA
Many people deal with sensitive teeth. Patients visiting our Bellevue dental office ask about preventing the infamous zing that radiates through their teeth when eating an icy cold beverage or enjoying a sugary treat. Today on the blog, learn five easy remedies for sensitive teeth so that you can savor your favorite foods without dental pain.
What causes tooth sensitivity?
Drastic temperature changes impact the tooth’s nerve once gums recede, which causes tooth sensitivity. These uncomfortable sensations most often occur while eating or drinking something cold, eating sweets, or brushing your teeth. You might be tempted not to brush your teeth if they are sensitive, but we urge you otherwise! Neglecting your oral health leads to tartar buildup, which aggravates tooth sensitivity. Practicing good oral hygiene reduces tartar buildup and may help prevent your condition from worsening.
Focus on gum health
Taking good care of your gums helps prevent gum recession, which is the main cause of tooth sensitivity. Brushing too hard or using a hard-bristled toothbrush could injure gums and cause gum recession. Gum health involves not only brushing your teeth twice a day but also flossing daily. This simple, two-minute step removes bacteria and plaque from between your teeth and along the gums, decreasing your risk of a gum infection known as periodontitis (gum disease). If you have gum disease, see Spektor Dental for ways to manage your condition. Gum recession worsens without gum disease treatment.
Watch what you eat (and drink)
Acidic foods and beverages such as citrus fruits, tomato-based foods, coffee, wine and tea are notorious for staining teeth. While you may prefer not to alter your diet, you should understand how acidity affects your dental health and how to protect your teeth and gums. Reduce acid exposure to your teeth by limiting your consumption of acidic foods and drinks. At the least, rinse your mouth with water afterward or wait about an hour and then brush your teeth. Otherwise, brushing right after consuming something highly acidic spreads the acids on your teeth.
Consume foods and beverages at a moderate temperature
Icy cold beverages are great for cooling down on a hot summer day, and sipping hot chocolate or coffee is a quick way to feel warm during the winter. Extreme temperatures won’t do your teeth any favors. The nerves in your teeth react to drastic temperature changes. That’s why you may feel tooth pain when eating ice cream, munching on ice, or slurping soup. Determining the ideal temperature that won’t cause tooth sensitivity may take some trial and error.
Visit the dentist twice a year
Managing sensitive teeth means practicing good oral hygiene, as well as having routine dental checkups and cleanings. No matter how well you brush, you can’t brush tartar away. A dental hygienist removes tartar buildup, which forms on everyone’s teeth. Missing these dental visits makes tooth sensitivity worse.
Use the right oral hygiene products
Sensitive teeth respond best to a soft-bristled toothbrush or one that is designed for sensitive teeth. Brush using the correct technique, which is moving the toothbrush in small circular motions, not vigorous back and forth scrubbing. Also, consider using sensitivity-reducing toothpaste. Look for the ingredient potassium nitrate, which blocks the tiny pores in your dental enamel, preventing tooth sensitivity.
If you try these tips and still experience tooth sensitivity, call Spektor Dental at (425) 454-1322. We can help you reduce tooth sensitivity through treatments specific to your oral care needs. Spektor Dental offers general and cosmetic dental services to the areas of Bellevue, Medina and Newcastle.