tooth sensitivity.

Managing Tooth Sensitivity

Understanding and Managing Tooth Sensitivity: A Comprehensive Guide

It is very common for patients to come in to TruDentistry and want to talk about what they can do about their tooth sensitivity. Managing tooth sensitivity is something that affects millions of people everywhere. Have you ever experienced a sharp, sudden pain when sipping a hot cup of coffee or enjoying something cold, you’re not alone.  It is often referred to as dentin hypersensitivity

  It is not a pleasant feeling, but the good news is that it can be managed. We will explore some practical tips on how to alleviate tooth sensitivity.

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

The inner layer of the teeth is called dentin. In a healthy mouth, the dentin is protected by the tooth’s enamel and gums. When these protective barriers begin the recede and weaken, then the dentin will feel the sensitivity to external stimuli.

Factors That Cause Tooth Sensitivity

Tooth Decay: When you form cavities, this can erode the tooth’s enamel, which exposes the dentin and leads to tooth sensitivity.

Gum Recession: Periodontal disease or gum disease will cause the gums to recede, and this can expose the tooth’s sensitive root surface which can make you feel the sensitivity.

Tooth Grinding: People who grind or clench their teeth will often have tooth sensitivity because they are actually wearing down the enamel of their teeth when they grind and clench. 

Acidic Foods and Drinks: A diet that consists of acidic foods and beverages can gradually erode enamel over time.

 Brushing Too Hard: Brushing too hard or using a toothbrush with hard bristles can contribute to enamel wear down and tooth sensitivity.

Cracked Teeth: If you have a cracked or fractured tooth, this can expose the inner layers of the tooths structure and this can most defiantly be a factor in tooth sensitivity.

Tips for Managing Tooth Sensitivity

The good news is we have some steps you can take to manage and alleviate tooth sensitivity:

Using a desensitizing toothpaste will help in blocking the pathways to the nerves that cause the sensitivity. Over time, this will help reduce the sensitivity when used as directed.

Gentle brushing is far more effective that aggressive brushing. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and gentle brushing motions. Avoiding the vigorous brushing. This just can further damage enamel.

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene: Proper oral hygiene, including regular brushing and flossing, can prevent gum disease and tooth decay that contribute to sensitivity.

Think about the food and drinks you are exposing your teeth to and try to reduce the consumption of acidic items like citrus fruits, soda, and vinegar-based foods.

If you are one that grinds or clenches your teeth, it may be time to consider wearing a custom-made mouthguard at night to protect your teeth.

We, along with the American Dental Association recommend that you visit the dental office twice a year. When you make regular dental check-up, it’s easy to identify and address any dental issues before a problem arises. Dr. Nguyen can suggest treatments such as fluoride applications or dental bonding to reduce sensitivity.

Preventing Tooth Sensitivity

Preventing tooth sensitively is by far the best strategy.  When you maintain a balanced diet and consume foods rich in calcium and at the same time avoid the excessively acidic and sugary foods, you can help keep sensitive teeth under control.

Smoking can also contribute to the erosion of the tooth enamel and gum disease. Avoid smoking at all costs.

Excessive consumption of alcohol can lead to dehydration and create dry mouth which will worsen a sensitive teeth situation.

Drink plenty of water because water is good for the mouth.  Water promotes saliva production which will contribute to protecting the tooth enamel.

Tooth sensitivity is a treatable condition. When you understand what causes the issue and when you follow some of the preventive measures, you can enjoy a pain-free smile and maintain excellent oral health.

If you’re experiencing persistent tooth sensitivity, schedule an appointment with us and we can recommend a personal treatment plan for your needs. We want all our patients to live a pain free life and find their best smile, while managing tooth sensitivity.