Will a sensitive teeth remedy work for you?
Before you try these remedies it is important to determine if there is a problem that needs treatment or if your teeth are just extra sensitive.
Some teeth hurt because of a cavity, tooth abscess or gum infection. These teeth need a dentist's attention.
But, teeth that over react to cold and have no obvious dental problems can be improved.
It is not unusual for teeth to be sensitive. It doesn't always mean there is a problem.
Teeth have nerves and when something irritates the nerve, it hurts.
But because you can't see what's going on in your mouth, sensitive teeth cause more concern than an arm or leg that gets bruised and is sore for a few days.
Give it some time. Some tooth sensitivity will go away as suddenly as it started. Maybe you bit down extra hard on something. Trauma to a tooth can make it sore for a few days.
A surprising number of teeth become sensitive because of teeth clenching and grinding. Clenching and grinding usually occur when we are under a lot of stress. Though stress is not entirely avoidable, being aware of its impact can help. Learn to recognize the signs of grinding and clenching here.
Change the way you brush. Brushing too hard can wear your enamel away. Simple changes in how you hold your toothbrush and the brushing motion you use will prevent damage. Learn the right way to brush here.
Add fluoride. Fluoride in toothpaste and mouthwash strengthens weak or thin enamel decreasing sensitivity. ACT mouthwash or Prevident Fluoride toothpaste are 2 products that I recommend for sensitive teeth. Learn how fluoride makes teeth less sensitive here.
Avoid acids in your diet. All sodas and most juices are acidic. Even diet beverages are too acidic. These foods and beverages can cause tooth erosion and make your teeth sensitive. Acid reflux is another cause of tooth sensitivity and tooth erosion. Learn more about tooth erosion here.
Ask for desensitizing Varnish. Most dentists or hygienists are willing to apply desensitizing varnish at your 6 month cleaning appointment.
It takes less than a minute and is painless to apply.
When applied before your cleaning varnish makes your cleaning so much more comfortable. The varnish won't last forever but does provide relief and can be reapplied as needed.
Ask your dentist about replacing missing enamel. Some teeth that have thin, worn or defective enamel can be repaired. Repairing them is usually optional but does protect the area from further damage and relieves sensitivity.
Sensodyne or other toothpaste brand that is made for sensitive teeth may help you manage sensitivity. Products that are made to improve sensitivity take some time to work. More about Sensodyne here.