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7 things you are doing that may be causing tooth sensitivity

Anyone who has ever experienced tooth sensitivity can tell you it’s not fun. It can result from a loss of enamel and may cause pain in your teeth when you encounter triggers — often things like hot or cold foods — and can make even the most normal of tasks pretty unpleasant.

Unfortunately, you might be sentencing yourself to this painful condition without even knowing it. If you’re doing any of these things below, it’s time to change your habits, pronto.

1. Brushing too hard

We all know it’s important to thoroughly clean your teeth, but brushing too hard isn’t a good thing. Brushing too aggressively (or with a brush that’s too hard) can actually damage your teeth or gums and lead to sensitivity.

More: 8 tips for drinking wine without ruining your teeth

2. Using the wrong toothpaste

Not all toothpaste is created equal. Using a whitening or tartar control toothpaste that is too abrasive may eventually lead to sensitive teeth. Look for a toothpaste with a gentle formula to avoid fixing one issue and causing another.

3. Grinding your teeth

Do you grind your teeth when you’re nervous, stressed or sleeping? That does a lot of damage to your teeth, which may lead to sensitivity. Try to avoid grinding your teeth during waking hours, and consider wearing a mouth guard to sleep if it’s a nighttime problem.

More: 5 delicious meals that will make your family’s teeth healthier

4. Skipping the dentist

The dentist is good for so much more than making sure your teeth are shiny and white. They can treat periodontal disease before it does any major damage — including causing tooth sensitivity.

5. Eating acidic foods and drinks

Just one more reason to put down that soda — acidic foods like citrus, soda and tomatoes can easily lead to sensitive teeth.

More: Why your dentist doesn’t like you drinking smoothies

6. Not using straws

Straws can save more than your lipstick, ladies. If you just can’t give up drinks like fruit juice, soda and wine, using a straw can help your teeth avoid the risk of sensitivity.

7. Brushing after a meal

How long have we all had it drilled into our heads that we should brush our teeth after every meal? Turns out that may not have been the best advice. Eating acidic foods softens your enamel, so brushing right after you’ve come into contact with those foods can put you at risk for even more erosion, leading to sensitive teeth.

This post was sponsored by Sensodyne® True White®.

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