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What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

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What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

Man have sensitive teeth with ice on white background

Are you experiencing sharp or shooting pains in your teeth when you eat something cold or hot? If so, you may be suffering from tooth sensitivity. Sensitive teeth are a common problem among many adults and can range from occasional twinges of pain to more serious discomfort. Not only are sensitive teeth painful, but they can also be indicative of a more serious underlying issue. Our oral health experts explain what causes tooth sensitivity and how you can address the problem.

What is Tooth Sensitivity?

Tooth sensitivity can be described as a sharp, temporary pain when your teeth come in contact with certain substances. It is often caused by exposed dentin (the layer of the tooth underneath the enamel), which contains microscopic channels that lead directly to the nerve endings inside your teeth.

Tooth sensitivity can be exacerbated by the consumption of hot and cold foods, sweet or acidic foods, brushing your teeth with a hard bristled toothbrush, and aggressive flossing. All of these factors can contribute to the corrosion of enamel, which cannot grow back once it is lost. This makes it especially important to keep an eye out for any signs of tooth sensitivity and address it as soon as possible.

Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Tooth sensitivity can be caused by a variety of factors. Common causes include enamel erosion, gum recession, fractured teeth, broken fillings, and plaque buildup. If your gums recede due to periodontal disease or brushing habits and the roots of your teeth become exposed, this can lead to increased sensitivity. Excessive tooth grinding (bruxism) can lead to worn enamel and exposed roots, as well.

In some cases, tooth sensitivity can be the result of genetic factors. Those who have thin enamel and overly sensitive teeth may experience an increase in tooth sensitivity as they age. However, while some people are born with more sensitive teeth than others, pain or discomfort is always the sign of a problem.

Treatment for Tooth Sensitivity

If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity, it is important to consult Dr. Barry Levin, your local periodontist. Treatment will depend on the cause of your symptoms and may include desensitizing toothpaste, fluoride treatments, dental sealants, a root canal procedure, or gum grafting. In some cases, a combination of treatments may be necessary to reduce tooth sensitivity and protect your teeth from further damage.

If your tooth sensitivity is the result of gum disease or gingivitis, Dr. Barry Levin will create a periodontal treatment plan to restore your oral health and reduce sensitivity. To prevent future problems, it is important to maintain good oral hygiene habits such as brushing twice daily and flossing every day.

Contact Our Periodontist Today

Dr. Barry Levin is an experienced periodontist and implant dentist who has been helping patients in the area for many years. As a nationally recognized expert in the field, he is committed to providing exceptional care with a personalized approach. If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity and would like more information about treatment options, please contact our office today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to helping you achieve optimum oral health and a beautiful smile.