If you find that cold drinks, hot soups, or even a chilly morning air cause you pain in your teeth, you may have a treatable condition of sensitive teeth.  It is quite common and often easy to care for, but it can also mean that there is something else wrong that requires the attention of a dentist.  If you find that the pain is not constant or severe, there may be things that you can do until you set an appointment to make life a bit easier for you.

How do you get sensitive teeth?

Each person has microscopic sized hole in their teeth which are sometimes exposed over time as enamel thins and gums recede.  When something hot or cold gets inside of these holes, it causes sharp pains that can seem very intense, but usually just for a short time.  Cracks in a tooth’s enamel or the beginning of a cavity are also problems that can cause sensitivity, so always keep track of when the sensitivity begins and its intensity so that you can explain it to the dentist.

How to deal with sensitive teeth

If you come in to see [doctor’s name] in Phoenix, Arizona, you may be instructed to use a toothpaste made specifically for sensitive teeth.  Before coming in it might help to give it a try and also try rubbing the toothpaste onto the gums using your finger as a part of your normal brushing routine.  A sensitive toothpaste does not start working right away and is meant to be used by people with sensitive teeth that is not caused by damage that a dentist needs to fix.

There are options for treatment in the office and it is best to find out what treatment is suggested for you before trying to diagnose the problem on your own.  Treatment at home can also be prescribed and needs to be followed as directed to avoid further sensitivity.

Things to avoid

When you have sensitive teeth, avoiding hot or cold foods is easy because you learn quickly what aggravates the pain, but other things that you want to avoid might not be quite so obvious.  One thing to look for is whether or not you are brushing your teeth too hard.  You should not be using a hard bristled toothbrush, so if you are you need to switch to soft or medium bristles.  Also, look for damage to your bristles.  If they appear bent or damaged, you may be brushing your teeth to hard.

If your teeth are sensitive, you also want to consider the acid content of the food and drink you consume and make some changes.  Any time you drink a soda or use lemons, limes, oranges, or tomatoes in some form you are exposing your teeth to acid, which can damage your teeth further and worsen your sensitivity.

If you are experiencing a problem with sensitive teeth, Dr. Leila Hakimzadeh Ghafouri of Dentistry at the Biltmore in Phoenix, Arizona is here to help!  Be sure to explain your sensitivity issues and what makes it worse, how you deal with the pain, and whether or not a warm or cold compress numbs the pain.  In severe situations you may have a cracked tooth or beginning cavity, or there could be an abscess that needs immediate attention.  Whatever the problem, make an appointment for a check-up and let Leila Hakimzadeh Ghafouri help you feel like yourself again.