Sensitive Teeth: Causes and Treatment

Sensitive teeth

Sensitive Teeth: Causes and Treatment

If you’ve ever bitten into a tasty ice cream or slurped a spoonful of delicious hot soup only to experience pain – you may have sensitive teeth. Tooth sensitivity is a common occurrence for many, but it could also signify more serious problems like cavities or tooth cracks. At Koch Aesthetics, we know it’s always best to address dental issues early, which is why we compiled this helpful guide with information about teeth sensitivity.

What Are the Causes of Tooth Sensitivity?

If you are genetically predisposed to having thinner enamel, you might be more likely to have sensitive teeth. However, certain factors can make your teeth more sensitive. You could potentially wear down your tooth enamel by:

  • Brushing too hard
  • Drinking and eating acidic foods and beverages
  • Using a hard toothbrush
  • Grinding your teeth at night

If you suffer from conditions like GERD (Gastroesophageal reflux), the acid that comes up from your stomach and the esophagus could wear down your enamel. Additionally, conditions that cause you to vomit regularly can also cause your enamel to be worn down by acid.

Symptoms of Tooth Sensitivity

People with sensitive teeth will often experience tooth pain after exposure to certain triggers. You may experience mild to severe symptoms, and your symptoms may come and go. The pain will most likely be localized at the root and may be a response to one of the following triggers:

  • Hot foods and beverages
  • Cold air
  • Cold foods and beverages
  • Sweets
  • Acidic foods
  • Cold water
  • Mouth rinses that contain alcohol

Other Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

In addition to having worn down enamel, tooth sensitivity could be caused by a number of more serious issues. The following are some dental conditions that could also cause tooth sensitivity:

  • Tooth decay
  • Broken teeth
  • Chipped teeth
  • Worn down fillings
  • Worn down crowns

All of the above conditions could leave tooth dentin (the part of the tooth beneath the enamel) exposed and cause pain. One way to distinguish whether your tooth pain is coming from overall tooth sensitivity or from a more serious dental issue is to note the location of the pain. If the pain is uniform across all of your teeth, it is likely due to tooth sensitivity. However, suppose the pain is localized to one tooth or a particular tooth area. In that case, it is likely due to issues like cavities, chips, cracks, or filling deterioration. 

Tooth Sensitivity Treatment

Mild tooth sensitivity can be treated with over-the-counter products like toothpaste and rinses. These products, made specifically for sensitive teeth, will not irritate your teeth and could help synthesize them and block the pain. 

Getting softer toothbrushes and being mindful of how you brush can also help minimize tooth sensitivity. However, if no over-the-counter methods work, it’s a signal that you should seek professional treatment. Your dentist can prescribe a gel or a prescription desensitizing agent. And more importantly, your dentist can advise you about whether your pain is caused by a more serious condition like tooth decay, cracks, or chips.

If you are experiencing tooth sensitivity and pain, don’t wait. Contact our offices today!

Koch Aesthetic Dentistry is Here to Make You Comfortable 

Tooth sensitivity could be more than just a minor inconvenience; it could signify more serious dental issues. Visit your dentist to determine the cause of your tooth sensitivity and avoid more intense treatments down the line. If you’d like to learn more about signs, symptoms, and treatment options for tooth sensitivity, contact us today and schedule an appointment with Dr. Koch.