Tooth sensitivity can make eating, brushing, and drinking uncomfortable and even painful. Sensitive teeth are usually a symptom that the enamel on your teeth has worn away or that the roots of your teeth have gotten exposed. Other reasons that might cause tooth sensitivity include old fillings, fractured or chipped teeth, cavities, or gum disease.
In healthy teeth, the enamel protects the dentin layer, while the gums protect the tooth roots. Dentin and tooth roots can be exposed when the enamel on your teeth wears away or when your gum line recedes. Dentin is softer than enamel and connects to the nerves in sensitive teeth that cause discomfort. When the dentin is exposed, hot, cold, acidic, or even sticky things irritate the tooth’s nerves, causing discomfort.
Consult your dentist if you are experiencing the symptoms of sensitive teeth. They can figure out what underlying issues are causing your pain. Following an examination, your dentist may suggest:
- Desensitizing toothpaste. Desensitizing toothpaste can help to alleviate sensitivity and pain. Inquire with your dentist about over-the-counter products that may be beneficial to you.
- Fluoride. Fluoride, which strengthens tooth enamel, may be applied to your teeth by your dentist. They may also advise you to use a fluoride treatment at home.
- Bonding. When the roots of your teeth have been exposed, bonding resin can be applied to sensitive root surfaces.
- Surgical gum graft. If you have begun to lose gum tissue, your dentist may graft tissue from elsewhere in your mouth to the affected area to protect exposed roots and reduce sensitivity.
Brushing your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste will help prevent discomfort from returning. When brushing, stay away from abrasive toothpastes and vigorous scrubbing. Tooth fractures and increased sensitivity can occur in patients who grind or clench their teeth. Your dentist should check for signs of grinding and clenching and may recommend a mouth guard.
Changing your eating and drinking habits can also assist you to feel less sensitive. Acidic foods and drinks, such as soda, citrus fruits, and wine, can wear away at your teeth’s enamel over time. If you’re drinking acidic liquids, use a straw to keep your teeth from coming into touch. To eliminate acids and avoid acid erosion, drink plenty of water and rinse your mouth or brush your teeth after eating
If you experience sensitivity or pain in your teeth, contact us as soon as possible so that we can rule out cavities, infections, or cracked teeth and help you find a long term solution to your discomfort. We want you to have a comfortable, healthy, happy mouth!