If you're experiencing tooth sensitivity, the first thing you should do is visit your dentist and rule out the chance that your sensitivity is being caused by tooth decay. Once you're given the all-clear on decay, it's safe to assume that your tooth sensitivity is caused by weak or worn enamel -- and perhaps some gum recession that has exposed the more sensitive lower portions of your teeth. Making a few changes to your habits will help ease the sensitivity over time, so that you can enjoy hot coffee and cold ice cream once again.
Switch to a Softer Toothbrush
Contrary to popular belief, you really don't need a rough, tough toothbrush to scrub the plaque off your teeth. Using too harsh of a toothbrush can weaken your tooth enamel and also irritate your gums, which can lead both to tooth sensitivity. Look for a toothbrush that is labeled "soft." As long as it is approved by the ADA, you can be confident that it will effectively remove plaque from your teeth. Focus on being thorough and not skipping areas while brushing, rather than applying a lot of pressure or scrubbing hard.
Drink Fluoridated Water
The fluoride in municipal water helps strengthen your tooth enamel, which will help alleviate sensitivity. But if you're drinking bottled water, you may not be getting this fluoride, since many bottled water brands don't add fluoride to their water. Either switch to tap water (you can filter it if you don't like the taste) or purchase a brand of bottled water that explicitly states it contains fluoride. You won't notice a difference immediately, but your teeth will slowly become less sensitive over time. As an added bonus, strengthening your enamel will protect you from cavities, too.
Use a Sensitivity Toothpaste
Sensitivity toothpastes are designed to fill in the little tubules that lead to the nerve endings in your teeth. This helps reduce sensitivity over time. Most people only have to use sensitivity toothpaste for a few weeks before they notice a big improvement. Make sure you read the label before using a sensitivity toothpaste. Some are designed to be used once a day, so you would use ordinary toothpaste for your other brushing session – and others are designed to be used twice per day.
If your sensitivity does not begin to subside within a few weeks of adopting the habits above, speak to your dentist, such as one from Port Orchard Dental Care Center.