Tooth Pain and Cold Weather
As the months get cooler, we bundle up in scarves and sweaters to protect against the biting cold. But what about our teeth? Many people in the Philadelphia, Bucks County, and Doylestown, PA area reach out to Artistic Expressions Dentistry to ask about tooth sensitivity at this time of year. Skilled dentist Dr. Bruce Wilderman can help.
Below, our team discusses the relationship between tooth pain and cold weather, and the steps you can take to prevent it. If you have ever experienced tooth pain from cold or hot temperatures, keep reading to learn more.
Cold Weather and Worn Tooth Enamel
One of the main causes of cold-related tooth pain is wear and tear on tooth enamel. When your tooth enamel is worn down, it exposes the dentin layer underneath.
Dentin is the porous hard tissue below the tooth’s protective enamel coating. The tubules (small holes) in the dentin make it more receptive to hot and cold temperatures.
Some common ways your enamel could be worn down include:
- Brushing too hard
- Tooth decay
- Acidic erosion
- Grinding your teeth (bruxism)
- Biting your nails
- Chewing on ice
- Long-term wear and tear
Cold Weather and Gum Disease
In addition to eroded enamel, other dental problems may increase tooth sensitivity. Periodontitis and gingivitis, two forms of gum disease, can contribute to tooth sensitivity. This is caused by greater exposure of a tooth’s root structure, which is meant to be concealed by the gumline.
Common symptoms of gum disease include:
- Bad breath
- Receding gums
- Red gums
- Sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
At Dr. Wilderman’s practice, we offer scaling and root planing in combination with laser dentistry to treat early gum disease. Soft tissue grafting can be performed to rebuild the gumline if you have experienced gum recession.
How to Prevent Pain Now
There are a number of steps you can take yourself to keep your teeth from hurting in cold weather. We recommend the following:
- Tip #1: Brush and floss daily.This keeps plaque from forming and damaging tooth enamel.
- Tip #2: Breathe through your nose. Avoid breathing through your mouth so that your teeth will remain protected from cold air.
- Tip #3: Cover your mouth. Using a scarf, mask, neck warmer, or any similar article of clothing can protect your teeth from the biting winds of winter.
- Tip #4: Use toothpaste for sensitive teeth. Brushing with a toothpaste made specifically for tooth sensitivity can prevent discomfort.
Professional Treatment Options
In addition to at-home remedies, there are a number of professional dental services we provide.
Dental cleanings and examinations can help catch potential problems. We also offer dental sealants, which are a great way to give your teeth extra protection from cavities and cold air. If you have damaged or decayed teeth, restorative dentistry services such as a fillings or crown can reduce sharp pain from cold weather.
Schedule an Appointment Today
If you have any more questions about why your teeth hurt in the winter, or would like to come in for a visit, feel free to reach out. Give us a call at (215) 631-8505 or go online to schedule an appointment today.