Have you ever experienced feeling a searing pain in your teeth after eating a spoonful of ice cream? You might wonder if you have cavity but you’ve been so careful to brush and floss each day. If you’re experiencing this but upon checking, you don’t have any cavity, then you might have sensitive teeth.
Sensitive teeth affect a large number of people, therefore, if you are suffering from it, you are not alone. In fact, about 25% of people suffer from sensitive teeth. This feeling occurs when the fluids within dentine, the soft bit of the tooth under the enamel, are affected by hot, cold, sweet, or acidic substances. The resulting sensation ranges from a mild tingle to severe discomfort and pain, triggering your nerve endings to fire.
Sensitive teeth should not be ignored because they won’t heal over time. If you experience sharp pains in your teeth when you are brushing them or when you’re eating or drinking, then you may be suffering from sensitive teeth, and maybe it’s time to talk to your dentist for you to know what you should do. But today, we are also giving you a bit of knowledge about sensitive teeth.
What is Tooth Sensitivity?
Tooth sensitivity is a simpler term used, but it is known as dentin hypersensitivity or root sensitivity. If your teeth or a tooth is painful whenever you eat or drink hot, cold, sweet, or very acidic food and drinks, or even when breathing in cold air, then you are suffering from sensitive teeth.
It will feel like a tingle at first, but lately, even a cold drink is enough to make you wince with displeasure. Usually, having sensitive teeth is a short-term issue which may arise from brushing too hard, dietary issues, or the use of certain dental products, such as teeth whiteners.
Symptoms of Sensitive Teeth
People who are suffering from sensitive teeth may experience pain or discomfort as a response to certain triggers. The most common triggers include:
- Hot food and beverage
- Cold food and beverage
- Cold air
- Sweet food and beverages
- Acidic food and beverages
- Cold water, especially during routine dental cleanings
- Brushing or flossing teeth
- Alcohol-based mouth rinses
These symptoms may come and go over time for no obvious reason. They may range from mild to intense.
What Causes Sensitive Teeth?
Sensitive teeth can be caused by a number of reasons and here are some of them:
- Worn Tooth Enamel: The enamel of your tooth can be worn down for different reasons such as brushing too hard, using toothbrushes with hard bristles, and as well as eating acidic foods and beverage, clenching your teeth, and more.
- Gum Recession: Gums normally shrink especially when you’re over 40 years old. With this, your roots will be exposed and won’t have enamel to protect them which causes sensitivity. Gum recession can also lead to gum disease that’s why it’s important to tell your dentist about any changes to your gums.
- Teeth Grinding: Teeth grinding is often an involuntary action that happens when an individual is asleep. This can also cause teeth sensitivity and other teeth problems.
- Post Dental Treatment Sensitivity: If you’ve recently undergone any dental treatments, these can also leave your teeth sensitive for a period of time and this is often temporary.
- Tooth Decay: Cavities and other types of decay can also cause teeth sensitivity because they expose the dentin of your teeth that has nerve endings. This exposure can lead to pain and discomfort, making your teeth more sensitive.
How are Sensitive Teeth Diagnosed?
If you think you are experiencing teeth sensitivity, it’s best to make an appointment with your dentist, so he can look at the health of your teeth and check for potential problems like cavities, loose fillings, or recessed gums which could be causing the sensitivity.
Your dentist will clean your teeth and do a visual exam and may touch your teeth using dental instruments to check for sensitivity, and they might also order an x-ray for your teeth in order to rule out causes like cavities.
Sensitive Teeth Treatment
The good news about having sensitive teeth is that it can be treated. First, while you are waiting for the effects of treatment to kick in, avoid things which lead to pain. Remember to not drink piping hot coffee or tea and avoid ice in your drinks. Remember, preventative oral care is key.
Second, you should consider the purchase of a toothbrush which is formulated especially for teeth which are super sensitive. If you have a fancy ultrasonic electric toothbrush, you may want to do a trial without it, since the intense vibrations can be too much to handle for some teeth.
Third, a toothpaste formulated especially for sensitive teeth can be of huge help. Regular kinds of toothpaste not only can be too abrasive for your kind of teeth, but they don’t have anything in them which is specially made for treating the pain and discomfort which you are feeling. Instead, you should get a specialty toothpaste for sensitive teeth which can block the sensations that travel through those holes in the dentin. For many people, it takes a bit longer for maximum effects to be reached.
If all goes accordingly to plan, simply switching to a gentler toothbrush and specialty toothpaste will be all that you need to enjoy a painless existence. However, if these tricks don’t do the trick, talk to your dentist about in-office alternatives. These may include the application of a fluoride gel or prescription-strength desensitizers. Your dentist may suggest a filling, a crown, or other methods of correcting the defect in your enamel or cementum that is causing your pain if these steps fail.
Products for Sensitive Teeth
If you have sensitive teeth and you’re looking for solutions that can help you ease the uncomfortable feeling, then here are some of the best products for sensitive teeth we found that you might want to try.
This mouthwash is alcohol-free and has potassium oxalate formula which is designed to shield and protect sensitive areas of teeth for 24-hour sensitivity relief if used continuously. It also blocks painful teeth sensitivity at the source by depositing crystals deep inside exposed dentin tubules which lead to sensitive nerve endings.
This mouthwash can help stop teeth sensitivity. It does not contain any harsh chemicals and it is certified non-toxic, alcohol-free, preservative free, sugar-free, artificial dye free, and BPA free. This mouthwash is dentist formulated and recommended. It has naturally derived ingredients making it taste great.
Aside from relieving tooth pain, this dental lotion helps heal gums and bad breath. It is also FDA-approved and manufactured in GMP facilities according to quality control standards.
This sensitivity toothpaste helps beat sensitivity pain fast by providing proven relief in just 3 days. It also offers long-lasting protection from sensitivity pain and helps keep sensitivity triggers from reaching your nerves. Aside from that, this toothpaste also provides cavity protection, and freshens breath and helps whiten enamel while relieving tooth sensitivity.
This toothpaste is Fluoride free and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate Free. It also contains 36% Xylitol – profoundly inhibits plaque bacteria. This also seals exposed dentin, replaces lost calcium and neutralizes acids, and is also unflavored.
This product is clinically proven sensitivity relief and is a sensitive relief toothpaste which provides 24/7 sensitivity protection. Plus, it also has maximum strength FDA-allowed Anti-sensitivity active ingredient and fights tartar and removes plaque.
Prevent having sensitive teeth by using this Fluoride toothpaste, which contains 1-7 ounce sulfate free. This toothpaste has advanced oral care benefits without irritation and is gentle on gums, enamel and dental work. It does not contain sulfates which are linked to canker sore formation, plus it whitens teeth and helps in removing stains.
If you have sensitive teeth and you’re looking for fluoride-free kinds of toothpaste, then this all-natural option is perfect for you. It does not contain any harsh abrasives such as SLS and carrageenan. Plus, it has a refreshing mint flavor that will freshen your breath and brighten your teeth.
This toothbrush promotes 45-degree alignment which removes 99.9% of plaque and disease-causing bacteria from below gum the line.
The package includes 3 Genuine Oral-B Sensitive Gum Care Electric Toothbrush with extra soft bristles which are good for sensitive gums and also provides a superior and gentle clean. Plus, it is the #1 dentist-recommended toothbrush brand worldwide.
If you do not like an electric toothbrush because you still want to feel ultimately in control when brushing your teeth, then this extra soft toothbrush is best for you.
This is one of the best electric toothbrushes for sensitive teeth. It features a sensitive mode which can still provide a great all round mouth cleaning without compromising its performance. It gently rotates to sweep away plaque and its softer sensitive brush can clean between teeth and in areas that are difficult to reach with a normal toothbrush.
This can be the best electric toothbrush for sensitive teeth. It can provide 40,000 pulsations and 8,800 oscillations per minute. It features 5 different modes including sensitive mode. Aside from that, it also has a built-in timer and range of brush heads that are suitable for sensitive teeth.
Remember that you are not alone in this, and your dentist likely has lots of experience in treating sensitive teeth problems. We hope the information we shared and the products on our list will help you overcome your sensitive teeth problem, but of course, it is still best to consult your dentist for further information and treatment.