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Lighthouse Dental Care
88 Ryders Lane, Stratford, CT 06614

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Understanding Sensitive Teeth

If you’ve ever experienced a stinging feeling when eating or drinking something sour, sweet, hot, or cold, you probably have sensitive teeth and gums. While this is a common oral health problem, it is also an easy one to treat.

Patients who have sensitive teeth and gums find that routine activities like brushing or flossing have become quite painful. They may even experience pain when breathing in cold air. Knowing what causes tooth sensitivity can help you learn how to manage the condition. It can even help you reverse any symptoms you’ve been feeling. Once you’ve found out about how to make your teeth feel better, you will be able to enjoy eating and drinking things that you may have previously avoided due to your sensitivity.

The primary cause of tooth sensitivity is the erosion of the tooth’s enamel. This allows the root of the tooth to become exposed. Cracked teeth, tooth decay, gum disease, receded gums and aggressive brushing of the teeth can also cause tooth sensitivity to set in. That’s because the sensitive nerves inside of the tooth’s roots become exposed to extreme sensations that can cause pain and sensitivity.

The best way to treat your sensitive teeth will be determined by the cause of the problem. For instance, if you have sensitivity caused by exposed dentin and nerves, your dentist may suggest that you utilize a desensitizing toothpaste. Your dentist may also recommend fluoride supplements to strengthen your teeth. Tooth sensitivity caused by receding gums is typically treated via the use of a dentin bonding agent that forms a barrier that keeps irritants from reaching the tooth’s nerve. If none of these methods work, your dentist may recommend that you receive a root canal.

Common Causes of Sensitive Teeth

  1. Using a toothbrush with hard bristles and brushing the teeth too hard can break down the enamel of the teeth and lead to sensitivity. Make sure that you use gentle movements while brushing your teeth. You should also use a soft-bristled toothbrush.
  2. Refrain from consuming acidic foods and beverages, as these can increase pain and sensitivity. This includes tomatoes, pickles, citrus fruits, etc.
  3. Grinding your teeth while you sleep exposes dentin and leads to tooth sensitivity. A custom-fitted night guard can help prevent this from occurring.
  4. Some of the ingredients found in tooth-whitening toothpastes, mouthwashes and other products can cause tooth sensitivity.
  5. Using a mouthwash that contains alcohol can lead to sensitivity. Use a neutral mouthwash, or refrain from using it at all.
  6. Receding gums due to gum disease can also cause sensitivity. Dental sealants and gum disease treatments performed by your dentist can treat this issue.
  7. A recent dental procedure like a root canal, filling or extraction can lead to temporary tooth sensitivity. If it doesn’t go away in a timely manner, talk to your dentist.
  8. Cracked and chipped teeth that are left untreated can cause a great deal of pain and sensitivity. Have this issue treated as soon as possible to avoid discomfort.
  9. Old tooth fillings can crack or leak, leading to tooth decay forming around the edges of a filling. Your dentist can replace the filling to address any sensitivity you’ve been experiencing.

There are some serious, underlying problems that can lead to tooth sensitivity, so it’s important that you seek out treatment with your dentist so that he or she can rule out any more serious problems. Your dentist can also recommend toothpastes and fluoride treatments that can address weakened enamel and rid your teeth of sensitivity.

Treatments for Sensitive Teeth and Gums

  • See a dentist in Stratford on a regular basis to be sure that you remain in good oral health.
  • Consistently follow your dental health care routine.
  • Brush your teeth and gums with gentle motions while using a soft-bristled toothbrush.
  • Use toothpaste that has been made for sensitive teeth.
  • Rinse your mouth with a fluoride mouthwash.
  • Wear a mouth guard at night to avoid grinding your teeth.
  • Stay away from acidic foods such as tomatoes, oranges and lemons.

It’s imperative that you know how to repair your sensitive teeth. If you suspect that your sensitivity is being caused by grinding your teeth throughout the night, you should visit your dentist to see if a custom-fitted night guard would be useful for you in preventing tooth fractures and sensitivity.

Refraining from the consumption of carbonated beverages, wine and acidic fruits can also help you avoid sensitivity. If you do eat or drink these items, try to drink water or milk shortly afterwards so that their impact is neutralized. Avoid brushing too quickly after consuming these items, as that can lead to more erosion.

Tips for Ridding Yourself of Tooth Sensitivity

If you’ve been experiencing tooth sensitivity, the following dental care tips could be of use:

  1. Discover Desensitizing Toothpaste – Using a specialized toothpaste can prevent sensitivity from hitting the tooth’s nerves. After a few uses, you’ll discover that this kind of product prevents pain and sensitivity.
  2. Ask About Fluoride – Your dentist can apply fluoride to sensitive areas of your teeth, strengthening the enamel of the tooth and warding off sensitivity.
  3. Find the Remedy at the Roots – Sensitivity that is caused by receded gums can be treated via a gum graft procedure. This procedure can relieve pain and discomfort felt due to root exposure.

Not only are sensitive teeth and gums treatable, but they are also entirely preventable. Practicing good dental hygiene is the best thing that you can do to prevent this issue from occurring. This means that you should brush your teeth twice a day, use a toothbrush with soft bristles, brush gently, floss your teeth once a day and receive regular check-ups from your family dentist in Stratford.

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