Tooth Sensitivity: What It Means and How to Treat It
Tooth sensitivity is no fun and causes a sharp sudden pain that is quite unpleasant. It can be set off by eating food that is very hot or cold or food that is quite sour. Even breathing in on a cold day can be enough to cause pain.
Why Do We Get Sensitive Teeth?
Tooth sensitivity can be caused by a number of different things. Some people will develop sensitive teeth if their gums begin to recede and this is because gum recession exposes the tooth roots which are not covered in protective tooth enamel, but instead have a layer of cementum over them. Cementum is far softer than tooth enamel and is more easily eroded away.
You may also develop sensitive teeth if you have untreated tooth decay, gum disease, or if your teeth have become worn down through clenching and grinding. Tooth sensitivity can develop if you have used tooth whitening products incorrectly, or have whitened unhealthy teeth. All of these problems will potentially expose the inner part of the tooth which is called the dentine. The dentine consists of lots of tiny tubules that lead directly to the pulp where all the nerves of the tooth are contained, and this is why teeth can feel sensitive.
What’s the Best Way to Treat Tooth Sensitivity?
The best place to start is by booking a check-up with our dentist in Ladbroke Grove. This is to ensure that your tooth sensitivity isn’t being caused by some dental problem that requires treatment. By examining your teeth and gums, our dentist will be able to determine if you have any problems with tooth decay or gum disease and can determine the reason for your tooth sensitivity. It could be that simply placing a filling or carrying out other repairs to damaged tooth enamel could be sufficient to correct this problem.
If we think the problem might be caused by clenching and grinding your teeth, a condition called bruxism, then we may suggest custom making a mouthguard for you to use at night. This is generally a clear plastic appliance that will fit over your upper teeth so that your teeth cannot come into contact during the night.
If, after all this your teeth are still sensitive then it’s worth trying one of the many types of toothpaste that are designed especially for sensitive teeth. This can be very effective as they work by gradually blocking the tiny tubules in the dentine that have become exposed, reducing tooth sensitivity. One thing to remember about these types of toothpastes is that you will need to continually use them for several weeks as the effects are cumulative. Afterwards you will need to continue using them to maintain the reduced tooth sensitivity. Making sure you use fluoridated toothpaste and dental products can also help and a fluoridated mouthwash may help decrease sensitivity. We can discuss suitable products with you when you visit Ladbroke Grove Dental Care.
There is no need to put up with sensitive teeth as it is well worth visiting us if you have this problem. Call us to book an appointment with our dentist in Ladbroke Grove on 020 7727 9836.