Suffering from tooth sensitivity: find out what you can do at home

  • A tooth can become sensitive when the protective layer enamel gets damaged
  • During tooth sensitivity, eating too hot or too cold items cause pain
  • Saltwater, oil pulling and green tea provide some of the solutions to tooth sensitivity

When eating and drinking becomes painful instead of a delight, the reason could be a sensitive tooth. But you don't need to worry about this problem as it is very common and treatable and some home remedies will save the doctor's appointment.

Causes of tooth sensitivity
A tooth can become sensitive when the enamel (protective layer) wears down. This makes the dentin underneath more permeable, allowing liquids and gases pass through easily. 

Below dentin, the dental pulp is present that contains many blood vessels and nerve endings. When substances pass through the dentin to this nerve ending, a person experiences pain. Very hot or very cold substances act as a trigger to pain.

All the following can wear down enamel and lead to tooth sensitivity
  1. Erosion of tooth due to the consumption of highly acidic food and beverages
  2. Tooth grinding
  3. Damaged tooth enamel due to brushing aggressively or because of hard toothbrush
  4. Gum recession
Home remedies to treat tooth sensitivity
A solution of salt and water is one of the most common treatments of dental problems. It helps in maintaining the pH balance of the mouth to create a more alkaline environment where harmful bacteria struggles to survive. 

All you need to do is add two teaspoons of salt in warm water, stir it well and rinse your mouth twice a day with it in order to reduce tooth sensitivity and pain. 

Oil pulling
It is an Ayurveda technique and can be tried with sesame and coconut oil to heal tooth sensitivity. It involves swishing oil around the mouth for several minutes before spitting it out. 

A 2009 study has shown that oil pulling helps treat gingivitis, a gum disease. Another 2015 study also backed this result and said that oil pulling reduces plaque formation. 

Guava leaves
Guava leaves have properties that are anti-inflammatory and reduce tooth sensitivity and toothache. 

Just chew few leaves for 2-3 minutes and then rinse your mouth. If you don't want to chew it, add 4-5 leaves and a cup of water in a utensil and boil it for few minutes. Add a sprinkle of salt and use it as a mouthwash.  

Green tea
Green tea is helpful for oral health too. If you are facing tooth sensitivity, have green tea without sugar and use it as a mouthwash twice a day. It will reduce inflammation and strengthen teeth.  

Well, nobody likes the smell of garlic from the mouth but garlic can certainly help you out with tooth sensitivity. It is an anti-bacterial agent and a natural anaesthetic that can relieve you from tooth sensitivity. 

Make a paste of two-three garlic, add few drops of water and half a teaspoon in it. Now apply this paste on the affected teeth or tooth. Let it stay for a few minutes and then rinse the tooth with warm saltwater. 

Chewing garlic also helps in producing allicin. A 2011 study concluded that allicin helps in killing bacteria that can cause dental problems. 

Clove oil
Clove oil helps numb pain while keeping teeth and gums healthy. From a long while, cloves have been used for their anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, anaesthetic properties that treat oral infections and reduce pain. 

The best way to use it is by mixing it up with almond or coconut oil and applying on the affective tooth. After a while, it can be washed away with warm water. 

Honey with warm water
Honey has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory properties which treat wounds. When faced with tooth sensitivity, rinse your mouth with a solution of warm water and a teaspoon of honey. It will heal the pain. 

Turmeric can be used in anti-inflammatory treatments. Turmeric also helps in wound healing. 

To alleviate the pain of sensitive tooth, you can massage ground turmeric on the affected tooth. Another alternative is taking half teaspoon turmeric, with a similar amount of salt and mustard oil. Mix this together and apply the paste on the affected part twice a day for pain relief.  

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