Are you experiencing pain in your teeth when you venture outside into the cold winter weather? If you are, you’re not alone!
According to dentist Columbia Dr. Gregory Wych, as hard as our teeth are, they are still vulnerable to extreme hot or cold temperatures. And because they are familiar with our normal body temperatures, when they encounter something hotter or colder, it can result in pain or mild irritation.
When cold air is breathed in through an open mouth, it can cause teeth to contract and can allow the air to affect exposed sensitive areas. After teeth have contracted from exposure to cold air, they will once again expand when you close your mouth. These actions can eventually cause hairline cracks in your teeth that you’ll feel in cold temperatures.
Your dentist Columbia also finds that some people clench their jaw while tensing up when trying to stay warm in the cold weather, which can also cause jaw and teeth erosion issues that can result in tooth pain.
A simple way to avoid tooth pain from cold air exposure is to breathe through your nose as much as possible when you’re outside. If the cold sensation or ache remains for longer than three days, there is a good chance your teeth may be compromised in some other way.
If the cold weather seems much harder on your teeth than seems normal, there could be some underlying problems that the cold weather may be revealing. These could include things such as older fillings that no longer fit, crowns or bridges that have eroded, cracked teeth, gum recession from over-brushing or periodontal disease, cavities, infected teeth or gums, bite issues and tooth clenching or grinding.
Exposed roots can also create sensitivity to cold air. Roots can be exposed when gums recede or are brushed too harshly on a regular basis. The zings that exposed roots can cause typically don’t last long, but they can be surprising and painful.
Your dentist Columbia advises that battling cold-sensitive teeth can be as simple as practicing good oral hygiene by:
- Getting regular dental check-ups;
- Brushing with an over-the-counter toothpaste brand made for sensitive teeth;
- Rinsing with a fluoride mouthwash once or twice a day;
- Using a soft bristled toothbrush and brushing gently;
- Flossing to stimulate your gums so they don’t recede as much.
If you are experiencing pain in your teeth during these cold winter months, follow these tips and you’ll feel better in no time. If the pain becomes unbearable and/or lasts longer than three days, call the office of dentist Columbia Dr. Gregory Wych immediately to schedule a consultation. The holidays are no time to be in pain!