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What Can I Do About Sensitive Teeth?

Sensitive-teeth-300x199Tooth sensitivity can affect one or more teeth. It’s most common when you eat or drink something hot, cold, sweet, or sour. Sometimes a breath of cold air can set it off. The pain can be sharp and sudden and can shoot deep into the nerve endings of your teeth.

To help treat sensitive teeth, use a soft-bristled toothbrush to gently brush your teeth and gums.  Avoid using hard-bristled toothbrushes and brushing too vigorously, which can wear down the tooth’s root surface and expose sensitive spots. Take a good look at your toothbrush. If the bristles are flattened or pointing in multiple directions, you’re putting too much pressure on your teeth. 

Sensitivity toothpastes, which contain strontium chloride or potassium nitrate, are very effective in treating sensitive teeth.  Regular use should make your teeth feel less sensitive.  Choose a fluoridated toothpaste and avoid using tartar control or whitening toothpastes, which can increase sensitivity. 

Keep in mind that highly acidic foods such as oranges, grapefruits and tomatoes, as well as tea and soda can increase tooth sensitivity, and work against any sensitivity toothpaste. If you do not get relief by brushing gently and using a desensitizing toothpaste, see your dentist. There are treatments that can be applied in-office to the roots of your tooth to reduce.  High-fluoride containing home care products can also be recommended to help reduce tooth sensitivity.  Ask Lakeshore Dental for more information on sensitive teeth.