Do your teeth hurt when you eat ice cream or drink hot coffee? Do you experience discomfort in your mouth when you breathe in cold air? If so, you may have sensitive teeth. People develop sensitive teeth when the enamel that protects teeth starts getting thinner or when the gums begin to recede.
In addition to seeing your dentist to get to the root of the problem, there are some simple, at-home treatments you can try that may help with the sensitivity and discomfort.
1. Sugarless Gum
Believe it or not, simply chewing sugarless gum regularly can help with the underlying problem of sensitive teeth. Because tooth sensitivity is often caused by thinning tooth enamel, it’s important to begin strengthening that enamel. Chewing sugarless gum increases saliva production, and studies have shown that saliva helps strengthen tooth enamel. However, make sure you are chewing sugarless gum, because sugary gum will cause tooth decay and only increase the problem.
Purchasing a toothpaste made for sensitive teeth is another way to strengthen tooth enamel, thus reducing sensitivity. In addition to strengthening tooth enamel, many of these special toothpastes also contain a maximum-strength anti-sensitivity active ingredient that will give quick relief. There are many great sensitive toothpastes out there. Some we would recommend are Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief Enamel Repair Toothpaste, Colgate Sensitive Prevent & Repair Toothpaste, or Sensodyne Repair & Protect Extra Fresh Toothpaste.
Did you know you can actually help with teeth sensitivity simply by increasing certain mineral-rich foods to your diet? Some foods contain minerals that will actually strengthen the surface of your teeth. For example, vitamin K has been proven to improve bone mineral density while also preserving your calcium levels. Foods that are rich in protein, such as chicken, eggs, and fish, and foods rich in calcium, such as cheese and milk, contain minerals that improve the health of bones and enamel, also helping with sensitive teeth.
While teeth sensitivity is common and often no cause for concern, it should not go ignored. Make an appointment with us at Cornerstone Family Dentistry so we can help identify the cause. And don’t forget to practice good dental hygiene every day, even if you aren’t experiencing teeth sensitivity. Brushing for two minutes twice a day and flossing once a day is the best way to prevent any potential problems with your teeth or gums.