Sensitive teeth and how to prevent it…

sensitive-teethWith our current heat wave many people are drinking colder drinks and suffering from sensitive teeth. Have you also had it? You know the feeling: you having an ice cold drink and suddenly one of your teeth has a sharp pain and then as quickly as it started it will disappear until you have another sip. Or when you’re brushing your teeth and if you rinse with cold water you get that same pain.

There are multiple reasons why you can suffer from sensitive teeth. You may have a cavity or hole in your tooth; the gums may have receded and exposed part of the tooth which is normally protected by the gum; you may have microscopic holes in your teeth by the gum line; you may have lost the hard teeth enamel layer due to brushing too hard, grinding your teeth or acid erosion.

Today we’re going to discuss sensitivity caused by acid erosion.

Acid erosion is the loss of the hard enamel layer due to either extrinsic or intrinsic reasons.

Extrinsic reasons would be drinking citrus fruit juices, cranberry juice, fruit smoothies, excessive citrus fruits, carbonated drinks such as soft drinks and sparkling water, excessive wine, how water and lemon, excessive balsamic vinegar to name just a few.

Intrinsic reasons could be acid reflux; hiatus hernias; anorexia, bulimia and other medical conditions.

How can you prevent extrinsic acid erosion? One thing to check is the frequency of intake of acidic food and drinks.

  1. Having the drinks through a straw will help bypass the teeth.
  2. Rinse your mouth with plain water after having anything acidic.
  3. Never brush your teeth straight after having an acidic drink such as orange juice or grapefruit juice. Delay brushing for at least half an hour.
  4. Try chewing a piece of sugar free gum for a few minutes to help neutralise the acid.
  5. Reduce your soft drink intake.
  6. See your dentist as often as they recommend. Your dentist can spot things early and advise you on the appropriate prevention techniques.

At Time Dental we love to help you stay healthy. Enjoy the rest of the summer!