As the weather turns colder, our Saint Louis dentists often hear from patients that their teeth are feeling more sensitive. We know that dental sensitivity can really put a damper on your day to day life. Keep reading to get more information about the root causes of dental sensitivity, as well as some strategies for minimizing discomfort.
Dental sensitivity all comes down to the state of your dental enamel. Enamel, as the outermost covering of your teeth, is charged with protecting the more vulnerable, inner layer of the tooth from damage. Generally, enamel starts out quite strong, resilient, and thick. However, a number of substances and habits can weaken and thin enamel over time.
- Acidic substances soften enamel and leave it susceptible to erosion
- The pressure put on your enamel from bruxism—chronic dental grinding—will cause your enamel to thin over time. Bruxism can also create small cracks and chips in your teeth.
- Dental caries serve as small conduits from the outer tooth to the sensitive inner dental layers
- Accidents and dental traumas create severe cracks and chips
Basically, any time that there is a weak spot in your dental enamel, irritating agents, like foods and drinks, can bypass the enamel and infiltrate the sensitive dentin or dental pulp. Patients are especially prone to experiencing sensitivity when their teeth are exposed to quick changes in temperature. This is why drinking a hot/cold beverage, or stepping out into frigid weather, can trigger discomfort.
The best way to deal with sensitivity is to fortify your enamel, or to cover sensitivity enamel with a protective layer of resin or a restoration. Additionally, there are a number of toothpastes and mouth rinses on the market that help to desensitize dental nerves.
Our STL dentists are here to help you smile confidently and comfortably. So, if you notice tooth sensitivity in your own life, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team—we look forward to speaking with you!
Because all of our patients are individuals, all of the cosmetic treatment plans that we create are likewise unique. Our Saint Louis cosmetic dentists always personalize treatment plans to meet our patients’ specific needs. Keep reading to get more information about some of the key considerations that we keep in mind when designing cosmetic treatment plans.
When you first meet with our dental team, we’ll spend some time getting to know you and your smile! This is a great time for you to share with us any and all concerns that you may have about your dental health, as well as some of the attributes of your dream smile. We’re your partners in dental care, so the process of making your dream smile a reality is truly collaborative.
First and foremost, we need to make sure that any aesthetic changes that we achieve are structurally sound, and enhance the strength and health of your smile. We don’t believe in covering up and hiding oral health issues.
We’ll also help you choose a treatment that fits your preferred timeline. Certain treatments, like teeth whitening, deliver immediate results, while others take weeks or months to complete. If you are wanting to improve your dental aesthetic in time for a specific event, let us know!
There are also aesthetic treatments available to suit any budget. Dental bonding is one example of a versatile restorative and cosmetic treatment that is quite budget friendly.
The key to successful dental care is to find treatments that meet all of our patients’ respective needs. This is why it’s so important for patients to receive customized, rather than one-size-fits-all dental care.
Our Saint Louis cosmetic dentists are happy to give you any additional information that you may need about the treatments that we provide, as well as our aesthetic philosophy. Give us a call or use the Contact Us page on our site when you are ready to get started!
In general, dental patients know that they are supposed to be brushing and flossing to care for their smiles. However, many people don’t fully understand how oral health threats can change your teeth. That is why, today, our Saint Louis dentists are giving you some more information about the properties of dental enamel, and what you can do to keep your enamel healthy and strong for as long as possible.
As you may already know, dental enamel is the outermost covering of your tooth—it’s the white and bright layer that shows when you smile! Dental enamel is designed to protect the more vulnerable inner layers of the tooth, called the dentin and dental pulp.
Because dental enamel does not have any nerves in it, you are able to chew and drink comfortably. Additionally, dental enamel helps to keep dental debris and bacteria from infiltrating the tooth.
While it is strong and durable, dental enamel is not indestructible. Certain habits, substances, and accidents can damage dental enamel and subsequently put the patient’s entire tooth at risk.
- Acidic substances weaken and thin enamel over time
- Habits like chomping on ice and hard candies can cause cracks and chips in the enamel
- Oral bacteria can infiltrate the enamel and cause spots of decay that serve as pathways to the inner tooth layers
- Chronic dental grinding—bruxism—leads to thinning enamel as well as cracks and chips in the dental structure
In order to keep your enamel strong and healthy it is vital that you seek prompt treatment for any dental health issues you may notice, including bruxism. Make sure to follow your dentist’s recommendations regarding caring for your smile at home and professionally. And, wait 20 to 30 minutes after consuming something acidic to brush your teeth—your enamel is softer and more vulnerable during this period of time.
As always, our Saint Louis dentists are happy to provide you with any additional information and guidance that you may need. Give us a call to get started!
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