Do you struggle with sensitive teeth? Even if you don’t, you likely know someone who does. Studies show that one in eight adults in the United States experience teeth sensitivity on a regular basis. For some it’s just an occasional twinge of pain when eating or drinking something hot or cold. For others, the pain can actually impede on their quality of life.
Toothpastes for Sensitivity Wear Off Too Soon
Many toothpastes exist on the market for those with sensitive teeth, but many patients find they don’t last long and the sensitivity returns just a few hours after brushing. Scientists have recently discovered an extract from green tea that could help. They’ve combined the green tea extract with ingredients commonly found in sensitivity toothpastes along with a mineral that is particularly helpful in strengthening teeth. They believe this new paste can help treat tooth sensitivity in addition to preventing cavities.
The scientists, from Wuhan University in China, tested the new paste on extracted wisdom teeth and discovered the formula plugged the open dentin tubules that result in sensitivity and released the extract that prevents cavities for up to 96 hours. It also helped the teeth stand up to erosion during that time period.
The Root of Tooth Sensitivity
Tooth sensitivity is usually the result of damaged enamel, said Dr. Ken Collins, DDS, founder of Collins Family Dentistry in Spokane, Washington.
“The enamel is the outermost layer of the tooth, and it protects the inside of the tooth from decay,” he said. “Although it’s the hardest substance in your body, acids from foods and drinks can destroy it over time. The worst part is that once destroyed it doesn’t simply grow back. Enamel doesn’t contain living cells, so it can’t regenerate.”
Another common cause of tooth sensitivity is receding gums. If you brush and floss too vigorously, you can cause damage to your gums. In addition, if you don’t keep up with proper brushing and flossing, bacteria and plaque can build up and cause gums to recede. Consistent brushing and flossing with a soft-bristled brush using gentle strokes is the best thing you can do to protect your teeth and gums.
In addition, professional exams and cleanings are imperative for removing built-up plaque that simply isn’t possible to remove with just a regular toothbrush, Collins said.
“Even if you brush for three minutes at a time, three times a day, there may be areas you are missing or not quite reaching,” he said. “If you don’t go to the dentist for two years, you have no idea you’re missing those areas, so for two years they will sit there accumulating bacteria and plaque and actively decaying. That’s one of the reasons many dentists recommend a checkup every six months.”
Or office in Spokane is located at:
3151 E. 28th Ave.
Spokane, WA 99223
Office phone # 509-368-7788