Did you know that exposure to cold weather can damage your teeth? While everyone is focused on fighting off colds and the flu this winter, not many people are thinking about how they can better protect their teeth.
It’s very common for your teeth to feel extra sensitive once the temperatures drop. Our teeth, like many other objects, expand and contract when they experience a drastic change in temperature, which can cause cracks to form when they are suddenly exposed to freezing air. While these cracks are typically not visible or dangerous, they can cause an increase in sensitivity that can affect daily life.
Here are a few simple tips to help you protect your teeth –and remain pain free – this winter.
Breathe In, Breathe Out
Breathing through your mouth while in the cold air can be a painful experience. If you are experiencing increased sensitivity while outside, try inhaling through your nose and exhaling out your mouth as much as possible to prevent further pain and discomfort. Even if you’re not experiencing sensitivity or pain, breathing through your nose can also help to prevent tooth damage from the low temps.
When stepping outside into the colder winter air, loosely wrap a scarf around your neck to cover your mouth or zip your jacket high enough that it is covered. This layer will act as insulation, warming the air as it passes through the material close to your face and protecting your teeth from the cold.
Change Your Toothpaste
If you’re experiencing an increase in tooth sensitivity and are unsure if it is related to the weather or something more serious, switch to toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth. These desensitizing toothpastes have compounds that minimize aches and pains that result from sensitive teeth.
If you brush your teeth too much, you risk losing enamel that has built up to protect the surface of your teeth. Over-brushing is simply unnecessary and can lead to even worse problems. Try brushing twice a day with a soft bristle brush and desensitizing toothpaste for best results.