Dental Care Education

Got Sensitive Teeth?

September 7, 2018 by Sandra Holifield, Oral Health Outreach Manager

Got Sensitive Teeth?

Think you won’t ever be able to have ice cream again? Well, good news, you don’t have to live with sensitive teeth!

There are several reasons why your teeth may become sensitive, ranging from mildly-severe worn tooth enamel to something a bit more detrimental such as a fractured tooth.

Here are some other possible causes:

  • Brushing too hard resulting in gum recession. This means your protective gums are not covering the most vulnerable parts of your tooth!  
  • Fractured teeth, missing fillings, gum disease or periodontitis, and cavities can also be painful. 
If you find yourself with some sensitivity, there are options for you depending on your certain situation, and you should always consult your dental professional for detailed answers. Don’t live with the possibility that it could get worse!

Your dental professional may suggest some of the following treatments for sensitivity:

Sensitive Toothpaste: This is specially designed to help fill in microscopic tubes in your tooth enamel, which helps to insulate the nerve and help protect it from cold and hot foods or drinks.

Fluoride Varnish: This would help relieve sensitivity by adding a protective layer over the sensitive area.

Desensitizing Agents: This treatment can be received at a dental office. Desensitizing treatment is stronger than over-the-counter sensitivity products.

Gingival Grafting: If your sensitivity is due to brushing too hard or trauma that has removed gum tissue, you may need surgical intervention to help replace the tissue that generally does not grow back on its own. This is called grafting which it is a minor surgical procedure done with a specialist in office under local anesthetics.

Root Canal: If you have sensitivity due to a large cavity, there is also hope for you! The tooth could undergo a root canal to save it. This is also a procedure done in office under local numbing and helps preserve your smile!

How do you prevent tooth sensitivity?

Most of these situations that cause sensitivity can be avoided. If you brush with proper technique and a soft bristled toothbrush, the chance of brushing away the gum tissue is minimal. Ask your dental hygienist how to brush properly and effectively! Brushing also helps prevent tooth decay, or cavities, which helps reduce the need of a root canal in the future!

Prevention is the key to a less expensive and less painful dental situation! If you have any questions about tooth sensitivity or any other issues with your teeth, gums, or mouth, your dental professional is ready and willing to answer them for you!

Mouth Healthy. (n.d.-a). Sensitive Teeth. Retrieved from

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