Here are five simple tips to deal with tooth sensitivity (or “dentinal hypersensitivity”):
1. For immediate relief, rinse with warm salt water (one teaspoon per cup) in the affected area. This has a soothing effect on the gums, and can be done several times a day.
2. Till a cause can be determined, avoid any hard or crunchy foods like nuts, granola, pretzels, etc. If a cavity is brewing, excessive pressure could increase discomfort.
3. Switch to a desensitizing toothpaste like Sensodyne or Crest Sensitivity, preferably without a whitening (and often abrasive) ingredient.
4. If using a manual toothbrush (soft or extra-soft only), be sure to brush gently in the affected area. There are no brownie points for using more muscle! The better electric toothbrushes will signal if too much pressure is applied to prevent you from doing it.
5. Lastly, but most importantly, SEE YOUR DENTIST! Let your dentist examine your teeth and discuss your symptoms to see if the sensitivity is due to gum disease, infection, teeth grinding, sinus issues or a cavity. This applies especially if your sensitivity persists for more than a few days, gets progressively worse or if heat becomes a trigger.
For those with chronically sensitive teeth, a higher content of fluoride is often helpful, such as a prescription strength fluoride toothpaste.
Have more questions? Call us at (214) 522-3110 and let us help!