WITH THE COLDER WEATHER AT THIS TIME OF YEAR many people find themselves with sensitive teeth. If you dread sweet or acidic drinks, ice cream or even avoid hot tea or coffee you are not alone.

What Causes Sensitive Teeth

One in seven adults experiences tooth hypersensitivity when they eat, drink or even take a breath of cold air. It can be an early warning sign of more serious dental problems. Fortunately there are many simple and effective treatments for this uncomfortable condition.

The most common cause of tooth sensitivity is when the dentine of the root of the tooth becomes exposed when gums recede. Acidic foods & drinks, gum infections and aggressive tooth-brushing are common causative factors. Grinding your teeth can also wear them leading to sensitivity.

What can you do at home?
  • Use a sensitive toothpaste twice a day to brush your teeth. You can also rub it onto the sensitive areas. These toothpastes can take anything from a few days to a couple of weeks to work, so persevere.
  • Avoiding hot, cold, sweet or acidic drinks, or foods like ice cream can help. If you have sensitivity when brushing your teeth with cold water from the tap, use warm water instead. Not brushing your teeth regularly could make the problem worse.
  • If you have tried these remedies for a few weeks and have had no improvement then book an appointment with your dentist. Something more serious could be going on.
What can your dentist do to help?

Fluoride gels, rinses or varnishes can be applied to sensitive teeth. These can be painted onto the teeth at regular appointments one or two weeks apart, to help build up protection. Other protective barriers may also be suitable.

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