Dealing With Tooth Sensitivity
Do you find your teeth are sensitive whenever you eat something very hot or cold or which is particularly sweet or sour? Sometimes even cold air can be enough to set off a pain that can be sharp and rather unpleasant and which can reach deep into the nerves in your teeth. Tooth sensitivity is no fun but it’s important to find out the cause by visiting your dentist in Downham Market.
What Can Cause Tooth Sensitivity?
Tooth sensitivity can be due to a number of different things. For example your teeth may feel more sensitive if your gums have begun to recede, exposing the tooth roots. Your tooth roots aren’t covered with tooth enamel but instead are protected by a much softer material called cementum which is more easily worn away exposing the surface underneath which is called dentine. The dentine is the inner part of your tooth and it’s made up of lots of different tiny tubules that lead directly to the centre of the tooth. The problem with this is that the central part of your tooth contains the nerves in what’s called the pulp. If food or drink is able to penetrate these tubules then the sensations can reach your tooth nerves, causing sensitivity or pain. Other common causes of tooth sensitivity include:
- Tooth decay which has exposed the dentine.
- General wear and tear or brushing too hard, or using a toothbrush with hard bristles that can wear down your tooth enamel.
- Having chips and cracks in your teeth which expose the dentine.
- Having bruxism, a condition where you clench and grind your teeth which can wear down the tooth enamel, exposing the dentine.
- Using over-the-counter tooth whitening products that are too strong.
- Age, as teeth tend to be more sensitive when you’re in your 20s and 30s.
- If you have had any recent dental work at your dentist in Downham Market then you may find your teeth are more sensitive for a few weeks afterwards but this should settle down.
Coping with Tooth Sensitivity
The best thing to do if you do have sensitive teeth is the book check-up with your dentist in Downham Market to determine the cause. It could be that you need a filling renewed, or maybe you have some chips in your teeth that require mending, or perhaps will benefit from changing your tooth brushing technique. It is important to brush and floss regularly, but you only need to use a soft bristled toothbrush and our hygienist can give you lots of advice on flossing more effectively. We might also suggest using fluoride to help harden your teeth.
Another tactic that can be very helpful is to use toothpaste for sensitive teeth. This works by gradually blocking up the tubules in any exposed dentine, reducing sensitivity in your teeth. You do need to use this toothpaste for several weeks as the effects are cumulative and you will have to continue its use to maintain the benefits.
There is no need to put up with sensitive teeth so if you have this problem please contact us to book an appointment with Downham Market Dental Care. Just give us a call on 01366 382265.