If tooth sensitivity is a problem for you, you’re harshly reminded of it every time you attempt to enjoy a hot cup of coffee or cold spoonful of ice cream. There are a ton of things that could cause your teeth to be sensitive from cavities to gum disease, but in every scenario, the painful reaction happens when food and drink makes their way inside the tooth to the nerves.Your teeth are protected by enamel and cementum—which are on the top of the tooth and the root, respectively. These outer layers protect the inner layer called dentin. Dentin is full of small tubules, which lead to the nerves deep inside the tooth. When enamel or cementum is worn away, or the gums recede to revel unprotected dentin at the root, that piping hot tea or spicy hot sauce can easily slip inside the tubules leading straight to the nerves. Ow.Your dentist probably advises you to use specific toothpaste for sensitive teeth. While that helps, you might need a little more to seriously make a difference. These three new products out now use new technology to hamper sensitivity and boost your quality of life.
Harnessing the Crest White Strip medium of product delivery, the brand’s latest innovation stops sensitivity dead in its tracks by targeting the root of the problem. Here’s how it works: When you apply the strip over your tooth and gum area, the product (a chemical called oxalate) attaches to the dentin and forms calcium oxalate, a solid compound that basically functions as a blockade, explains Paul Sagel, Research Fellow at Procter and Gamble and the inventor of Crest Whitestrips. With the channels clogged up, there’s no way for any substance to make its way into the tooth and nerve.After just one 10-minute application, you’ll notice relief, as opposed to a toothpaste that can take weeks to improve the condition. It might take a few applications to completely get rid of sensitivity, but once you do, the results will last until the gums recede enough again over time to expose new unprotected dentin.
Whitening sensitive teeth is inherently a challenge, since whitening products tend to increase sensitivity. This mouthwash leaves out a common whitening ingredient—peroxide—which can irritate teeth and contribute to sensitivity. Instead, its polyphosphate technology whitens in two ways: by forming a shield over teeth to protect from staining, and binding to the enamel surface and dissolving stain deposits. Not only does it kill cavity-causing mouth bacteria and whiten teeth, but it also contains fluoride, making it a great product to help restore enamel and bolster your teeth against further irritation.
One way you’re heightening your sensitivity is by brushing too harshly and damaging the gums, which is why your dentist might also recommend using a toothbrush with softer bristles. This one was created with 48 percent softer bristles than your average brush, which helps cut back on gum erosion and protects enamel that can be worn away by brushing too aggressively. The shape of the bristles also helps you clean every side of the tooth, and “polishing whitening cups” help remove stains, so you’ll see a cleaner difference and won’t as an inclined to over-brush.