Top 5 Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

If you’re one of the 40 million Americans with sensitive teeth, you must be familiar with the painful zing that follows a hot drink, a bite of ice cream, or just a deep breath of cold air. These and other elements can cause a sudden discomfort if you have sensitive teeth, also called dentin hypersensitivity.

Each of your teeth has an important protected layer called enamel. If your enamel gets worn down, your teeth can become more sensitive over time. Your enamel is the visible, white part of the tooth and it protects the softer, inner layers of each tooth. Receding gums can also reveal sensitive parts of the tooth that aren’t protected by enamel.

If you’re living with sensitive teeth, it’s good to know what causes the pain and how to avoid it. You should also talk with Lebanon dentist Dr. Jerry Cox about how to treat sensitive teeth and prevent further damage to your enamel or gums.

Causes of Sensitivity

Underneath your enamel is a part of the tooth called the dentin. Dentin is soft tissue full of nerves, which can be sensitive and painful. Certain habits and behaviors are more likely to wear down your enamel or cause gum recession that increases tooth sensitivity. The top five causes of tooth sensitivity are:

  1. Brushing your teeth too aggressively and wearing down enamel and/or gums
  2. Long-term exposure to acidic food and drinks such as citrus, coffee, and soda
  3. Tooth decay or broken teeth that expose the dentin
  4. Broken or leaking fillings
  5. Grinding your teeth

If you’re serious about avoiding or treating tooth sensitivity, talk with your dentist about which of these behaviors might be causing your problem. It’s very important that you keep track of when your teeth hurt and where you feel the pain. Sometimes tooth sensitivity means there’s another problem such as infection or cavity that needs a different treatment than just thinning enamel.

Treating Sensitive Teeth

Depending on the exact cause of your tooth sensitivity, Advanced Dental may recommend:

  • brush more gently and/or buy a soft-bristle brush
  • start wearing a nightguard, or
  • another procedure to fix the problem.

Two simple products that can go a long way in relieving sensitive teeth are:

  • Sensitive toothpaste to use every time you brush your teeth at home. You can find a variety of toothpaste for sensitive teeth at the drugstore. This type of toothpaste decreases the sensitivity of the nerves in your dentin. Although you can never grow new enamel to replace what may be worn down, sensitive toothpaste will offer temporary relief for as long as you use it. Most people need to use sensitive toothpaste for 2-4 weeks before experiencing its complete benefits.
  • Fluoride gel applied to each tooth by the dentist can strengthen what remaining enamel you have and protect sensitivity from increasing.

If you have questions about sensitive teeth or any other oral health matter, Dr. Cox is currently accepting new patients. Make an appointment today at our office. Your oral health makes a big difference in your overall health and quality of life. You are worth the investment!

The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.


Sources

http://www.knowyourteeth.com/print/printpreview.asp?content=article&abc=W&iid=329&aid=1319&_ga=2.184525094.1602333355.1502038931-353398246.1469550673

http://www.colgate.com/en/us/oc/oral-health/conditions/tooth-sensitivity/article/what-causes-sensitive-teeth-0714

 

 

Dr. Jerry Cox graduated from the University of Missouri at Columbia. He graduated from the University of Missouri School of Dentistry in Kansas City. Dr. Jerry Cox continued his education with hundreds of hours of advanced courses. He believes that for his patients, education must continue as procedures and technologies constantly evolve. He practiced pediatric dentistry for the Missouri Public Health Department for three years. He is a member of the American Dental Association, Missouri Dental Association, and Springfield Dental Society. Dr. Jerry Cox has continued his education with training in the latest technology. Advanced Digital and 3D technology allow for one day crowns and bridges and guided implant surgeries. These high tech services allow cosmetic makeovers in just one day. CEREC digital technology creates the most accurately fitting crowns with life-like ceramics. Additional training in orthodontics allow him to provide orthodontic treatment, including functional appliances, Invisalign, and conventional braces for adults and children in his general practice. He is trained to provide Minimal Oral Sedation.

Posted in Dental Health Tagged with:

Call Us Today!!

(417) 588-2555
Need Directions? Click Here

Schedule An Appointment

Advanced Dental is conveniently located on South Jefferson Ave. in Lebanon, and has a convenient appointment time waiting for you and your family. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!

Do not include sensitive personal, financial, or other confidential information (social security, account number, login, passwords, etc.).

Associations