Many of our patients say that they have sensitive teeth – especially to cold, sweets, and acidic foods. What can cause sensitive teeth? So what can you do about it? And when should you book an appointment to see us?
Sensitivity that is short lasting (many patients refer to it as a “zing”) and only occurs in response to a stimulus like something cold or sweet, will most likely improve with these strategies:
- Avoid using abrasive toothbrushes and toothpastes… these can wear away enamel and expose the inner layer of tooth which is sensitive. Hint: many whitening toothpastes are actually very abrasive! The type of toothpaste we recommend is customized to the individual patient according to their risk/history of sensitivity, tooth wear, and susceptibility to cavities.
- Avoid acidic foods and drinks. Studies show that having acidic foods and/or drinks more than twice a day significantly increases your risk of sensitivity
- Stop clenching your teeth: consider wearing a nightguard at night, and if you clench during the day try to be more aware and keep “lips together, teeth apart”
- Take a break from whitening: both professional and over the counter whitening products can temporarily increase tooth sensitivity.
Now you know what can cause sensitive teeth. If it doesn’t improve or if the sensitivity lingers for more than 30 seconds after you have something cold/sweet, if the tooth aches, throbs, or the pain spontaneous… its time to see us! We can often accommodate same day appointments in our schedule. We will try to figure out the cause of the sensitivity you’re experiencing so that we can find a solution.
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