If you asked most kids to name their favorite season, there’s a good chance they would say summer. After all, what could be better than going on vacation, spending time at the pool, and not having homework? But you may be surprised to learn that summertime can also come with sensitive teeth. If your child has been complaining of sensitivity, keep reading to learn about 3 common causes and how a pediatric dentist can help!
1. Snacks and Beverages
When the temperatures rise, kids reach for cold beverages, popsicles, and ice cream. Even in perfectly healthy teeth, consuming anything ice cold can easily stimulate the nerve and lead sudden sensitivity.
One great way to prevent this is using extra topical fluoride and getting a professional fluoride treatment for your child at their checkup. In addition to strengthening their teeth to prevent cavities, fluoride also puts a protective layer over the enamel to prevent cold temperatures from reaching the nerve.
If your child has sensitivity on individual teeth or in isolated areas, it could be a sign of a cavity. When cavities progress, they get closer and closer to the nerve in the center of a tooth. As the protective outer layers of the tooth are damaged, the nerve becomes more “exposed,” leading to sensitivity.
Scheduling regular checkups is the best way to find cavities as early as possible. This allows a pediatric dentist to treat the tooth more conservatively (e.g. repairing it with a small filling as opposed to a large filling or dental crown).
3. Sinus Problems
The spring and summer are often a time when allergies and sinus problems become worse. Since the roots and nerves of the upper teeth near the sinuses, this can lead to sensitivity.
If your child has sensitivity in their upper teeth only, it could be a sign of sinus problems. Because the root of the problem (no pun intended) isn’t dental, talk to their medical doctor about evaluating them for allergies and sinus issues.
Or, if you’re in doubt about the cause of your child’s issues, simply schedule a checkup (and since you won’t have to worry about it conflicting with school, it’s a perfect time). Once a dentist has pinpointed the specific reason for their sensitivity, they’ll be able to recommend the best treatment to alleviate it.
Summertime is a fun and enjoyable part of childhood – by addressing your child’s sensitive teeth, you can make sure it stays that way!
About the Author
Dr. Mira Albert is a board-certified pediatric dentist with over a decade of experience and a serious passion for her job. She and her team have the training to help every child have a great experience in the dental chair and a healthy smile for life. If you have any questions about how we can help your special needs child, she can be contacted through her website.