Can the cold weather conditions affect your teeth? The answer is yes, it can. Tooth sensitivity is a very common and real thing during cold weather conditions.
According to the Academy of General Dentistry, about 40 million adults suffer from tooth sensitivity in the United States.
The most frequent complaint from dental patients is a sudden, sharp pain that is triggered when the teeth are exposed to cold air or cold weather temperatures. But the good news is, teeth sensitivity is treatable.
Weather sensitivity can occur regardless of how well you care for your teeth, but your risk is greater if you do not practice good oral hygiene. Poor dental care can affect the enamel of your teeth, which protects the dentin.
If the enamel erodes or if the gums recede, the dentin can become exposed to the elements. When the temperatures drop outside, your teeth become vulnerable to the cold air for a longer period.
This causes the enamel to expand and contract, making the dentin become exposed to the cold air and chilly wind. This is what may make your teeth more sensitive to temperature changes.
For sensitive teeth, when cold air travels through thousands of tiny pores called tubules and reaches the nerves inside the tooth, it can deliver a sharp pain. Fortunately, the pain of sensitive teeth can easily be managed through preventative methods.
Understanding tooth sensitivity will help you to recognize the difference between a little discomfort and a major oral health concern.
5 Ways to Manage Tooth Sensitivity During Cold Weather
Breathe in through your nose
When you are outside during chilly weather, remember to breathe air in through your nose and out through your mouth.
Since your cheeks and lips act as insulation for your teeth when your mouth is closed, the air you breathe in through your nose will be warmer by the time it reaches your teeth.
If you are outside in the cold weather, wrap a scarf around your mouth to warm the air before it reaches the surface of your teeth. You could also cup your hands around your mouth and nose to create warm air that you can comfortably breathe in.
Sip a warm beverage
To keep your teeth from feeling like they are freezing when you are outside in the cold, try sipping on a warm drink from a thermos, preferably sugar-free.
Limit time outdoors
If your teeth are sensitive to cold weather, you might want to limit the time you spend outside. Since your teeth expand and contract when exposed to cold temperatures, they become susceptible to hairline fractures.
This provides another pathway to the nerves making teeth sensitive to the cold.
Use desensitizing toothpaste
Toothpaste specifically for sensitive teeth is designed to help seal the exposed tubules, which can reduce tooth sensitivity by treating it at the source.
If your teeth hurt in cold weather, you are not alone. A drop in winter temperatures can make your teeth hurt in cold weather and feel sensitive, especially if you walk outside and take in a big breath through your mouth.
Most cold sensitivity comes and goes, depending on what the cause is. But tooth sensitivity is your body’s way of telling you that something is going on, therefore, should never be ignored.
Read also: Why are My Teeth So Sensitive?
A visit to Maestri Family Dental can help determine exactly which teeth are exposed to sensitivity and recommend an appropriate treatment plan. If your teeth are especially sensitive, more advanced treatment may be necessary.
For a better understanding of why your teeth hurt in cold weather, schedule a dental exam today. Dr. Maestri can help you understand how cold temperatures affect your teeth and how to identify the various symptoms of sensitivity.
We also offer a wide variety of dental treatment options to help eliminate tooth pain and keep it from coming back.
Whether you are just beginning to struggle with sensitivity or if winter conditions always make your teeth hurt in cold weather, it’s worth visiting Maestri Family Dental, your family dentistry in Lafayette, LA.
We are dedicated to making sure our patient’s overall dental health care is met. Let us care for you and your smile.