Sensitivity to Hot and Cold – Longview, TX
Enjoy Hot and Cold Foods Again
Everyone loves a refreshing glass of ice water or a fresh cup of hot coffee or tea — well, everyone except those whose teeth are sensitive to temperature changes. If hot and cold foods and beverages make you cringe, you are far from alone. Countless individuals struggle with dental sensitivity. On this page, we discuss what may be causing your sensitivity, how you may be able to find some relief with at-home remedies, and how you can tell if it is time to ask your dentist in Longview for help.
Causes of Sensitive Teeth
Teeth have multiple layers. The enamel, the outermost layer, is extremely hard. Its purpose is to protect the more sensitive layers beneath it. Unfortunately, the enamel can become thin and weak, which allows hot and cold temperatures to permeate it and irritate the dentin, a portion of the tooth that connects to its nerve. Then, the nerve sends pain signals to the brain.
Some individuals have naturally thin tooth enamel. Other factors that can cause dental sensitivity to hot and cold include:
- Habitually consuming acidic or sugary items, which can erode the tooth enamel.
- A cavity that eats through the enamel and exposes the dentin.
- Gum recession that exposes the tooth roots, which have no enamel to protect them.
- An infection that causes the inner part of the tooth to become inflamed.
Caring for Sensitive Teeth at Home
Here are a few techniques you might try at home to relieve the sensitivity:
- Use a toothpaste that is especially made to reduce sensitivity. These products contain ingredients that can stop your teeth’s nerves from sending pain signals to your brain.
- Rinse daily with a fluoridated mouth wash.
- Always be thorough but gentle when you are brushing your teeth.
- Cut back on soda, energy drinks, and other treats with a high acid or sugar content.
- Avoid grinding your teeth.
When to See Your Dentist
You should visit our practice as soon as possible after you notice increased dental sensitivity. We will evaluate your oral health and strive to pinpoint why your teeth are sensitive. Then, we’ll provide you with personalized tips on how to manage your discomfort so you can get back to enjoying your favorite hot and cold treats. For example, we may recommend that you start using a certain oral hygiene product or that you adjust your brushing and flossing technique. We can also provide you with a custom mouthguard to address nighttime teeth grinding.
If your dental sensitivity is isolated to a particular tooth, it is especially important that you come to visit us. You may have a cavity that needs to be filled, or you might have lost an old restoration and require a replacement. If the sensitivity is extreme, and it lingers even after the source of the temperature change is removed, you might have an infection inside the tooth. In that case, root canal therapy may be the best way to relieve your pain and restore your oral health.
Are you struggling with sensitive teeth? Contact Vaca & Kirby Dental today to learn more about how we can help!