One of the biggest complaints orthodontic patients have when undergoing treatment is that their teeth are sensitive. If you've ever experienced that stinging pain any time hot or cold foods and beverages touch your teeth and gums, you know unpleasant it can be. However, what you may not know is that sensitivity isn't so much caused by what you are putting into your mouth, but rather your brushing habits.

It's only natural to want to remove every bit of your last meal from in between your brackets, but over brushing or doing it too hard is never a good idea. Toothbrushes have notoriously tough bristles and cleaning too frequently or not being gentle when you do can destroy your gum line. As your gum line disappears over time, the spongy root surfaces of your teeth become exposed. This is what leads to sensitivity. 

You're probably wondering what you can do to alleviate the discomfort you could be experiencing. The first recommendation is to brush after every meal and floss every night. This may sound like common sense, but many people don't listen to this advice. If you follow this tip, there will be less food stuck in your brackets, meaning you won't need to scrub your teeth so hard. Next, purchase a soft-bristled toothbrush, which allows you to be much more gentle. You may also want to consider buying a toothpaste designed to fight sensitivity. Sensodyne® and Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief® are great options.

Finally, speak with your New York City orthodontist. These experienced professionals are trained in helping patients relieve tooth sensitivity. No individual should have to remain in a state of perpetual discomfort while undergoing treatment. 

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