What you need to know:
- Sensitive teeth can be caused by a number of problems. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce tooth sensitivity that are effective and some of these solutions can be utilised easily at home. The most important thing to remember is that a proper solution can be found after a thorough checkup by your dentist.
Do you suffer from painful sensations in your teeth from normal activities such as eating, drinking, and brushing? If so, it is likely you have wondered how you can help treat your sensitive teeth so there is no discomfort.
Sensitive teeth can be caused by a number of problems. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce tooth sensitivity that are effective and some of these solutions can be utilised easily at home. The most important thing to remember is that a proper solution can be found after a thorough checkup by your dentist.
The commonest cause of sensitivity is wearing down of the enamel, which is the hardest protective outer layer of the tooth. This can be caused by a number of things for example brushing the teeth too hard, eating acidic foods such as lemon tea which destroy the enamel layer, grinding teeth either knowingly or unconsciously and bleaching one’s teeth using whitening toothpaste, among others. The solution to sensitivity can only be found after identifying the cause. These include:
● Toothpaste for sensitive teeth which is prescribed by a dentist and should be used for a specific period of time. If sensitivity persists, seek advice from your dentist.
● Fluoride gel given only at the dentist.
● Fillings that cover exposed roots, usually sensitivity due to deep cavities on teeth might need to be filled.
● Desensitising pastes (not used with a toothbrush) you can get from your dentist.
● A mouth guard to protect teeth if you grind. This stops tooth wear.
● Also, avoid acidic foods and drinks as mentioned above.
If your case is serious, your dentist might suggest a root canal or any other form of treatment.
It is also important not to shy away from dental care because of tooth pain. Ignoring your teeth can make things worse. Brush and floss twice a day to help keep your smile bright and pain-free. And see your dentist for a checkup twice a year.
Dr John Paul Okim, dental surgeon