Teeth sensitivity is a common issue that is experienced by at least 40 million U.S. adults at various times.
You’ll know what teeth sensitivity is because when you consume a cold or hot food, you’ll receive a sharp reaction that most often results in “Ouch!”. Again, it’s a sharp pain – not a dull, throbbing pain.
Teeth sensitivity does not necessarily point to a larger, more serious problem either. Sometimes the issue lies in our daily habits.
Top Teeth Sensitivity Causes + Solutions
Touching on the point of daily habits, there are a few habits that can be easily adjusted in order to find relief.
1. Brushing Too Hard
Probably the most common issue is brushing your teeth too hard. Or maybe you aren’t brushing too hard, but you’re using a toothbrush that is old and the bristles have hardened.
In either case, this results in wearing down the protective layers of your teeth which are where many dental nerves are stored. When these are exposed, you will definitely feel sensitivity.
Solution: Run your toothbrush over hot water to soften it, and then brush gently and slower. We recommend also investing in a new toothbrush.
2. Grinding Teeth
Another way to wear down enamel and expose the tooth’s nerves is by grinding your teeth. Sometimes we do it in our sleep without even realizing.
Solution: Contact your dentist about an orthodontic mouth guard that prevents teeth grinding that can be worn at nighttime only.
3. Specific Dental Products
Certain mouthwashes and toothpastes contain ingredients that make teeth more prone to sensitivity – especially tooth whitening products.
Solution:Try swapping what you use with neutral fluoride mouthwashes and toothpastes made specifically for sensitive teeth. They do not work for everyone, but it’s worth a shot.
4. Cracked Tooth/Pits in Teeth
Sometimes we have a slightly cracked tooth or a pit (i.e. a hole) on a tooth that is highly prone to sensitivity.
Solution: Pits can be corrected with a dental filling of your choice and cracked teeth can be restored with cosmetic dentistry. Sensitivity should stop immediately after restoring the tooth.
Untreated decay will inevitably lead to a host of various problems including tooth sensitivity. It manifests itself in the form of cavities and periodontal disease (i.e. gingivitis or receding gums).
Solution: The only real solution here is to have the decay addressed by brushing, flossing, visiting your dentist,
We’ve touched base on the most common forms of tooth sensitivity issues, but another solution are dental sealants which could help seal off certain areas of the tooth such as exposed dental nerves. This has been shown to provide relief in many patients.