If you have ever found yourself experiencing a sudden stabbing pain in your teeth while consuming something hot or cold, then you’ve likely experienced tooth sensitivity. Unfortunately, that experience is one that is routinely shared by tens of millions of Americans, In fact, dental office surveys indicate that somewhere around one out of every eight people in the country endure this discomfort on a regular basis. The good news is that there are options for addressing the problem.
Why Teeth Become Sensitive
Tooth sensitivity can occur for a number of reasons, including loss of enamel, cavities, and even gum disease. Often times, these conditions can result in exposure of the dentin, allowing extreme temperatures and various types of foods to stimulate the tubes that connect the exterior of the tooth to the underlying nerve. That stimulation results in sharp pain that extends right to the nerve of the affected tooth.
Who is at Risk for Sensitive Teeth?
Surveys indicate that this sensitivity appears to be most common among people twenty to forty years of age. It also seems to afflict women more than men, and has been associated with certain identifiable behaviors and medical conditions. People with receding gums, gum disease, cracked teeth, and various levels of dental erosion are all at greater risk. In addition, patients who grind their teeth can damage the enamel and create sensitivity. Finally, temporary sensitivity can occur after bleaching and other dental procedures.
Managing Your Sensitive Teeth
There are several options for addressing the issue of tooth sensitivity:
- In cases where the sensitivity is temporary, it is often possible to simply avoid the problem. Stay away from hot and cold beverages, as well as sweetened and acidic foods.
- Change your toothbrush. In some cases, your toothbrush can contribute to your sensitivity. Stiff bristles can damage tooth enamel, which can increase the risk for sensitivity. If your teeth are sensitive, try using a brush with softer bristles.
- Monitor how you brush. Some people use too much pressure while brushing, and that too can wear away the enamel. Use soft, gentle strokes, and allow the toothpaste to do the work for you.
- Use the right toothpaste. There are a variety of specialty toothpastes on the market today, including many that help to rebuild your lost enamel. If your teeth are sensitive, put away the harsh toothpastes and try one of these options instead.
- Seek professional dental assistance. Dentists have a variety of treatment options that can help patients address the issue of sensitive teeth, including fluoride varnish, bonding agents, and foams or gels. Your dentist can also provide you with more concentrated fluoride toothpaste that can help to restore tooth surface strength.
At Ebenezer Dental, we understand how frustrating it can be to experience tooth sensitivity. Those sudden spasms of pain can make it difficult to enjoy even something as simple as a cold beverage. Fortunately, a visit to the best dentist in midtown Manhattan can help to resolve sensitivity and strengthen your teeth. Give us a call today to find out more about how we can help you to avoid the pain and discomfort caused by sensitive teeth.