When cold air hits your teeth, you may experience cold weather tooth sensitivity that is just a mild discomfort or it could hit you like an electric bolt that makes you shudder. Just as if you are eating ice cream and get a sudden sharp pain, frigid temperatures can cause the same reaction. Teeth are porous and not immune to extreme temperatures. Cold air breathed in through your mouth can cause the teeth to contract. Once you close your mouth, your teeth will expand again. This contraction and expansion of the teeth can cause tiny hairline fractures in your teeth. You may be completely unaware they are even there until you breathe in an arctic blast and get a sudden surge of pain. Also, people may clench their jaw when they are cold. This can contribute to tooth discomfort and cause jaw pain.
5 Steps to Alleviate Cold Weather Tooth Sensitivity
- Breathe through your nose. Once you close your mouth, cover your teeth with your lips and get your saliva circulating, your pain should subside quickly.
- Don’t clench your teeth. Be mindful of tensing up to stay warm. This can cause tooth erosion and increased sensitivity.
- Don’t brush too hard. Brushing too hard on a regular basis can cause your gums to recede and expose the roots of your teeth. Exposed roots are more sensitive to temperature changes.
- Practice proper oral hygiene. Make sure you are brushing and flossing every day. Choose and soft bristled toothbrush and brush gently. Flossing also stimulates your gums, prevents them from receding and keeps them healthy. Rinsing with mouthwash is also a great way to ward off sensitivity. It can create a seal over the sensitive areas of your teeth.
- Get regular dental checkups. Visiting your dentist every 6 months will help stay on top of any dental problems that may be developing. Most insurance companies cover dental check-ups twice a year. Finding any problems with your teeth early keeps you from having to go through more extensive treatment and more tooth sensitivity.
If you feel that your sensitivity is lasting longer than it should, there could be an underlying problem that needs to be evaluated. Contact South Tampa Smiles at (813) 289 – 0560 if you are experiencing cold weather tooth sensitivity and need to make an appointment for an evaluation. We are here to help.