If you've ever had your teeth cleaned, you may have come away from the experience feeling like your gums were more sensitive than before. You might think this is a bad thing, but it's actually a good thing. However, if you don't like the feeling, there's something you can do to avoid it in the future, too, and it'll benefit your oral health. Here's what you need to know about this temporary sensitivity.
What Happens Between Visits
The root of the problem that causes your gum sensitivity happens between dental appointments. During the time you spend away from the dentist, plaque and tartar start to build up on the gums and teeth. While most people think of these things as just causing cavities, the reality is that they can also cause gum disease. Many people will have plaque and/or tartar on their gums and not even realize it until they visit the dentist's office.
When It's Removed
The root of your sensitivity is coming from when this layer of plaque and tartar is removed from your gums. Think of it like removing a band-aid, except that the band-aid is made of sticky plaque.
When your dentist pulls off this plaque band-aid, your gums are temporarily sensitive. This is because they've likely been inflamed and caught under this plaque or tartar, and now they're exposed to the surface and are receiving full circulation again.
Having gum sensitivity after seeing the dentist is actually a good thing because it means that your gums are now free of plaque and tartar and can start to heal. However, if you really hate the feeling, there's one easy way to avoid it: visit the dentist more often.
Plaque and tartar shouldn't build up considerably between dental appointments. This is part of the reason why most dentists recommend at least two teeth cleaning appointments with them per year. By getting your teeth cleaned more often, you can get any developing plaque off before it becomes tartar, which should reduce or eliminate the feeling of sensitivity afterward.
Having tartar and plaque on your gums can do a lot of damage to them, including sparking gum disease. While your first impulse might be to avoid the dentist's office to avoid the sensitivity you associate with it, this is actually the wrong way to go. Instead, visit your dentist a little more often and make sure that you're flossing and brushing effectively at home to avoid feeling like this again.