What Causes Your Teeth to be Sensitive and Can it be Treated?
Some people can bite right into the middle of ice cream and simply enjoy it. Others get skittish just thinking about biting into ice cream. The same holds true with really hot food. Some people aren’t affected at all by biting into steaming hot corn on the cob. Others have to use their gums to try to remove some of the corn kernels from the hot cob.
Those who have to be really careful in the ways that they bite and chew hot and cold foods very likely have tooth sensitivity. And, if you are one of them, you know it immediately.
Prompted by an array of factors, tooth sensitivity can be the result of worn tooth enamel, exposed tooth root, gum disease, fractured teeth, or cavities.
How is tooth sensitivity caused?
To understand how tooth sensitivity occurs, you must first get a clear picture of your teeth and gums. The crowns of teeth have a layer of enamel covering them. For those who don’t know, the crown is the place where the gum line meets the tooth. A layer referred to as cementum is underneath the gum line. The cementum serves as the protectant of the root of the tooth. Dentin is below the enamel and cementum.
Now, here is where sensitivity enters this picture. When the layer of protection of the dentin diminishes, hot or cold drinks or food reaches the nerves inside a tooth. This prompts sensitivity. Basically, the nerve of the tooth is no longer protected, and it reacts to the hot and cold temperatures of the food that touches it.
Can tooth sensitivity be treated?
The good news is that yes, sensitive teeth can be treated. It is possible that you can – once again – eat and drink hot and cold foods without wincing in pain or feeling any discomfort. In fact, there are a total of five types of treatment available, one of which could be the right treatment for you!
Root Canal Therapy – This is extreme which is why this is presented first. Don’t be alarmed right off the bat. Root canal therapy is a final option if you are enduring persistent extreme pain and the other types of treatment have not been effective for you.
A Crown or Bonding – If the gum line is decaying bonding or a crown can be helpful.
A Surgical Gum Graft – This is a procedure that occurs in the dentist’s office. It involves putting a protective gum graft over the affected gum that is no longer protecting the tooth. This procedure is effective for protecting teeth and mitigating hypersensitivity.
Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth – Using this type of toothpaste can relieve pain in the short term. But, it’s only temporary. Basically, this toothpaste is composed of a compound that prevents sensitivity in the nerve area.
Fluoride Gel Treatments – As another in-office procedure, fluoride gel is known for strengthening the tooth’s enamel which helps block any hot, cold or discomforting sensations. This procedure is quick and can be performed each time you visit your dentist.
For more information about sensitive teeth or anything related to dental health, contact Paul Mansky Dental today! We are located in Troy, Michigan and can be reached at (248) 689-5508 and we hope to hear from you soon!