Toothpaste on a toothbrush.

If you’ve noticed your teeth hurt when you eat hot, cold or sweet foods, you probably have sensitive teeth. Sensitivity can have lots of causes, but no matter what’s creating it, using sensitive toothpaste can help you get back to enjoying the foods & drinks you love!

How It Works

Sensitive toothpastes work in two main ways, depending on their ingredients. Some sensitive toothpastes have ingredients that create a barrier over the sensitive areas on your teeth, which helps prevent discomfort by keeping foods & drinks from triggering exposed dentin & nerves. Others focus on soothing the nerves inside your teeth to ease & lessen pain. Both kinds are effective, so you should ask your dentist if one type of toothpaste will work better for you.

Most sensitive toothpastes also contain fluoride, which helps strengthen your tooth enamel & prevent cavities (which can cause even more sensitivity!). These toothpastes not only treat the sensitivity you’re currently experiencing, but also work to prevent greater sensitivity & pain in the future.

Either way, sensitive toothpaste works best when you use it twice a day. Some rapid relief products can start working in as little as three days, but most sensitive toothpastes require daily use for several weeks in order to be fully effective. To maintain this relief, you should keep using your sensitive toothpaste long-term. If your teeth are still sensitive after several weeks of using sensitive toothpaste, please talk to your dentist.

What if I Still Want to Use Whitening Toothpaste?

There are several different kinds of sensitive toothpaste. Some focus on whitening your teeth, freshening your breath or protecting your gums. Talk to your dentist about which kind of toothpaste will best suit your needs. Treating your teeth sensitivity doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the special advantages of other toothpastes!

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