What To Do About Sensitive Teeth

Excerpt: Tooth sensitivity or dentin sensitivity, can be a pain, you may not even realize your teeth have become sensitive until you bite into some ice cream, or take a sip of hot coffee.
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Tooth Sensitivity – Fast Facts

  • Your teeth may be sensitive for no reason at all, and the issue may spontaneously go away!
  • Air and especially wind can cause sensitivity, so be wary of windy weather!
  • It may be caused from brushing too much or too hard! 

Tooth sensitivity or dentin sensitivity can be a pain, you may not even realize your teeth have become sensitive until you bite into some ice cream, or take a sip of hot coffee. If the sensitivity is bad enough, then it can really ruin your day and cause you to think twice about the foods you are consuming. However, there is a lot of good news about sensitive teeth as there are treatments that might not even cost too much extra time or money than what you’re currently doing.

sensitive teeth and their Symptoms

For most people with sensitive teeth, the foods that trigger the symptoms are fairly predictable. Sensitivity is generally caused by significant temperature changes, pressure, extra sugar, or alcohol. Foods that fall into these categories good choices to be aware of you’re concerned about sensitivity:
  • Hot, cold, sweet, or acidic food and drink
  • Coldwater, especially during routine dental cleanings
  • Brushing or flossing teeth
  • Alcohol-based  mouth rinses
  • Cold air
Tooth sensitivity can happen without warning, for seemingly no reason, and the pain may range from mild to intense.

What causes tooth sensitivity?

While there are certain conditions that can cause teeth to be more sensitive, some people may be genetically more prone to sensitivity. This generally results from having thinner enamel, enamel is what protects the inner structures of your teeth, if there’s less protection, they can be more sensitive.


Enamel can be the thing for other reasons though:


  • Regularly eating or drinking acidic foods and beverages – Be aware of the foods that may be causing the sensitivity and try to limit them.
  • Having a brush with bristles that are too hard – Dentists often recommend softer bristles due to less potential damage of gums and teeth (check the packaging for the bristle toughness)
  • Brushing with too much force – You don’t need to put lots of pressure on your teeth, try to consciously use less pressure when you brush.
  • Grinding your teeth (bruxism) – Grinding your teeth can be prevented or at least mitigated, you can ask your dentists for solutions based on your specific situation.
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While these are generally the most common causes of tooth sensitivity, there are other factors that can contribute to tooth sensitivity:

  • Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD) – The acid in your stomach can sometimes come up and affect the teeth. This acid is used by the body to break down food, so it will certainly have a negative effect on your teeth.
  • Gum recession – Gums protect your teeth and their nerves. If your gums expose more of your teeth and especially your nerves, you’re most likely going to experience sensitivity.
  • Tooth decayCavities wear your enamel down and may even directly expose the inner structures of your teeth. This is serious for both infection & sensitivity.
  • Fractured Teeth – Same as tooth decay, if you chip a tooth, you will lose varying degrees of sensitivity which will be caused by the lost enamel.
  • Dental procedures – Operations like bleaching, crowns, and fillings can cause sensitivity, ask your dentist what you can do about the sensitivity before the procedure.
While sensitivity can often be reversed, it will be very hard to prevent depending on your situation, so if you do experience it, there’s likely not a reason to panic unless it’s very severe. Although if it’s ongoing past a couple of days, you may want to book an appointment due to the concerns listed above.
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Other Tooth Sensitivity Treatments

On top of what was discussed above, there are other methods you can use to combat tooth sensitivity. One of the most popular solutions is sensitive products: Sensitive toothpaste & mouth wash will help mild cases of sensitivity. Even if you don’t have sensitivity now, they also may help fortify your teeth against future sensitive situations.

If these over-thecounter solutions do not work, you need to ask your dentist for solutions that will. They may prescribe you stronger sensitive toothpaste and mouthwash, or they may need to look to see what the problem is and cure that. If it’s from a cavity or gum recession, then these are generally curable issues. It will be worth getting the problem looked at by an expert since the issue causing the sensitivity may be considerably worse than sensitivity teeth.

Frequently Asked Questions

Some minor sensitivity may be unavoidable, however, you can prevent lots of severe sensitivity with better hygiene and regular dental visits.

If it’s severe and without warning, it may be a sign of a chipped tooth, exposed root, or cavity, among other things. A dentist appointment would be recommended.

Teeth bleaching is well known to cause sensitive teeth, the sensitivity should subside over time. If not, tell your dentist.

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