Sensitive teeth and gums can mean feeling mouth sensations that range from distracting and annoying to quite painful. Both hot and cold foods can be a trigger for intense tooth sensitivity that can affect the sufferer's quality of life. Dental procedures like teeth whitening, porcelain veneers and dental implants can all exacerbate mouth sensitivity. If this describes you, these five tips can help to address and reduce the discomfort that can be caused by sensitive teeth:
1. Avoid Acidic Foods
Foods and drinks that are high in acids can corrode tooth enamel, expose your dentin and cause sensitivity. Cut back on orange juice, grapefruit and other citrus fruits, wine and pickles. If you must eat them, rinse your mouth thoroughly immediately afterward.
2. Softer Brushing Techniques
Brushing too hard is another major cause of gum recession and tooth sensitivity. Outer protective layers of the teeth and root can wear away, exposing more sensitive inner layers. With gum recession, your teeth's dentin becomes exposed, leaving their tiny, sensitive nerve endings open to irritation. To alleviate these issues, always use a soft bristle toothbrush and limit brushing to just two minutes. Try not to brush your gums directly.
3. Paste for Sensitive Teeth
Toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth can also help reduce tooth and gum sensitivity. It contains an ingredient that protects the tiny sensitive nerve endings within the dentin. Results are often cumulative and will improve over time, so continued use is usually necessary in order to experience lasting relief from sensitivity.
4. Painted On Barriers
If a this sort of toothpaste just isn't giving you the results you're seeking, consult with your dentist about painted on barriers as an option for your most sensitive areas. Painted on barriers aren't permanent, yet they can offer many months of relief, depending on the material that is used.
5. Receding Gum Treatment
If the gum tissue around your teeth has receded away significantly as a result of gum disease or vigorous brushing, the roots of your teeth have likely become exposed and the cementum worn away. If so, a dentist may be able help you with your severe gum recession through procedures that rebuild and restore the tissue around your teeth.
Lastly, take the time to consult with a dentist like Peter T. Andolino, DMD, PC so that you can find the exact cause of your tooth sensitivity, especially if you've recently had dental work done that might have increased your teeth's sensitivity. Inquire at your next checkup, or schedule an appointment for extreme cases. Painted on barriers and gum restoration could be viable solutions; however, other issues can be solved through simple lifestyle changes. Your dentist will be able to assess your specific condition and determine the best course of action.