How the Cold Weather Can Affect Your Teeth

Teeth sensitivity during winter

As the temperature outside drops, your teeth are also feeling the chill. Extreme temperatures can cause serious pain for your teeth, especially if you deal with teeth sensitivity issues.

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

Many Americans suffer from tooth sensitivity. Most cases go away on their own. However, if you are experiencing prolonged tooth sensitivity it might be a sign of a larger health issue. It’s important to contact your dentist in West Hollywood, if you have extreme sensitivity in your teeth that lasts longer than 2-3 days.

While the nature of tooth sensitivity can vary from person to person, the cause is almost always exposed nerve endings due to worn tooth enamel. Tooth enamel is what protects the inner layer of your teeth (dentin). Once the enamel wears away, there is nothing to guard sensitive teeth from hot and cold temperatures.

A loss of tooth enamel can be caused by the following factors:
  • Improper brushing or brushing your teeth too hard – Using a toothbrush that’s too rigid can put unnecessary pressure on your teeth and compromise your enamel. Additionally, brushing too forcefully can wear down your teeth’s enamel and leave the dentin exposed.
  • Excessive teeth whitening – The chemicals in some over-the-counter teeth whiteners can wear away the enamel on your teeth. Be sure to consult your dentist before starting a new tooth whitening product.
  • Dental plaque buildup and tooth decay – If you don’t remove the plaque effectively, it can harden into tartar and contribute to tooth decay, further exposing the dentin. It is vital to brush twice a day, floss once a day, and visit your dentist for regular teeth cleanings.
  • Teeth grinding – The friction from tooth grinding can wear away your enamel, and the pressure can cause cracks that might later attract bacteria and infections. Pain and sensitivity can result from tooth decay and enamel loss.
  • Gum disease – Tartar buildup can make brushing difficult, since this hard substance can block access to your teeth and gums. Over time, your gums can become inflamed and infected, eventually receding and pulling away from your teeth. Newly exposed root areas can easily become hypersensitive to extreme temperatures.

How to Keep Your Teeth Healthy this Winter

To reduce tooth sensitivity and keep your smile healthy, be sure to visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings, use tooth sensitive toothpaste, and sleep with a mouth guard if you grind your teeth during the night. If you are experiencing tooth sensitivity or would like to schedule a dental cleaning with the highly reputable dentist in West Hollywood, Dr. Farahmand, DMD of OF Dental Care, please call 310.273.3650 or visit www.OFDentalCare.com to learn more.

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