Posted on 1/20/2019 by Brandon Cooley
|If you have sensitivity in your mouth, you've probably tried many options, including desensitizing toothpaste. Does it really work, and is it a helpful addition to your dental hygiene routine?
The short answer is yes, provided that you are using one of the many toothpastes approved of by the American Dental Association (ADA) for desensitizing teeth. How they work depends on the type of sensitivity you are experiencing.
The majority are designed to apply a numbing agent (typically potassium nitrate or strontium chloride) to the teeth, seeping into them and reducing their aches. Certain other dental products are designed to do similar, but applied to the gums, most typically in a gel that adheres better while being used. Some are even designed to help restore and repair the enamel of the tooth, reducing sensitivity by covering up the nerve-laden dentin that has been exposed over time.
However, regardless of the type of sensitivity or even pain you are experiencing, it is important before you begin using numbing agents to first address the cause of the affliction. While age is the most common cause (with patients over 20 at greatest risk of developing sensitivity), there could be other underlying issues that need to be detected and treated before they worsen.
In this case, using desensitizing toothpastes to mask the issue is not appropriate, as it is merely treating the symptoms instead of the cause, and can leave you numbly unaware of more dire warning signals your mouth is giving off, such as early signs of cavities, gum disease, tooth decay, and abscesses.
Regardless of your numbing needs, please immediately contact us if you are experiencing sensitivity or pain in your teeth, or have questions about the products you use. It is urgent that we address your dental issues as soon as possible, so that they don't develop into more serious problems.