What is Exactly tooth sensitivity is ? Have you ever experienced sudden pain or discomfort in your teeth after slurping a spoonful of steamy soup or taking a swig of an ice-cold beverage? If yes, then you are not alone. Even though the pain or discomfort caused by too hot or too cold beverages and foods could be a sign of tooth cavity, gum recession or a worn filling, it is also very common in individuals who have sensitive teeth. If you are suffering from any such dental problems, always talk to your dental professional for advice. Only a specialist can confirm you have sensitive teeth and the cause of the same.
What is Exactly Tooth Sensitivity
Also known as dentin hypersensitivity, tooth sensitivity is a painful condition that can occur gradually or suddenly. It occurs when the outer layer of your tooth (tooth enamel) breaks down or erodes, exposing the underlying layer (dentin) and making it sensitive to various sensations. It is a very common dental problem and it has been estimated that 4 in every 10 adults experience tooth sensitivity regularly. It may be chronic or mild and may affect a single tooth, several teeth or even all teeth in your mouth. It may be caused due to several factors, but cases of teeth sensitivity are easily treated by improving the dental health care routine.
Who mostly Suffers from Tooth Sensitivity?
Many individuals are suffer from exactly tooth sensitivity or dentin hypersensitivity and it can happen at any time. The dental problem is more common in individuals aged between 20 and 50, it can affect teenagers and people who are over 60. Routine visits to the dental professional can help sufferers with managing sensitive teeth.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Dentin Hypersensitivity?
As stated before, dentin sensitivity is the occurrence of pain or discomfort when teeth are exposed to too cold or hot temperatures. It can also be felt while brushing or flossing the teeth, chewing or eating, consuming acidic drinks or foods, or/and even breathing in cold air. The symptoms may come and go over time for no obvious reason. If you are exhibiting any symptoms or signs of tooth sensitivity, consult your dentist immediately for a proper assessment.
What cause Sensitive Teeth?
Exactly Tooth sensitivity can be best explained as a short, shooting pain arising from exposed dentin due to a loss of the protective covering of the tooth enamel. Numerous factors can contribute to the exposure of the dentin. Some of the more common reasons are:
1. Aggressive or Hard Brushing
Brushing your teeth with too much force or/and using a toothbrush with hard bristles is one of the biggest reasons behind sensitive teeth. Brushing too hard can erode the tooth enamel, and also provoke gum recession, which may provoke tooth sensitivity. To prevent this from happening, brush gently using a soft-bristled toothbrush.
2. Sugary or/and Acidic Beverages and Foods
Acidic and/or sugary foods and beverages are the common culprits of tooth sensitivity. A high intake of these drinks and foods can erode the small amount of tooth enamel over time, making the dentin more vulnerable and causing teeth sensitivity.
3. Teeth Grinding
Do you have a habit of grinding your teeth at night in sleep? Clenching or grinding your teeth regularly and gradually break down tooth enamel over time, exposing the middle layer of teeth or dentin and making your teeth sensitive.
4. Frequent use of Tooth-Whitening Products
Tooth-whitening products are among the biggest contributors to exactly tooth sensitivity. This is because that these products contain whitening chemicals that are hard on tooth enamel and can slowly erode it.
5. Gum Disease
Gum diseases such as periodontal disease or gingivitis typically lead to gum recession or inflammation which can wear down the enamel and leaving the roots of teeth vulnerable and exposed, thereby causing tooth sensitivity.
There are many treatment options available for exactly tooth sensitivity. However, the treatment option recommended by the dental professional largely is dependent on what is discovered during the oral examination.
How to Revent Sensitive Teeth?
As mentioned earlier, tooth sensitivity can range from chronic to mild. However, preventing tooth sensitivity can be as simple as:
- Brushing with a softer toothbrush with a sensitizing toothpaste
- Replacing your old toothbrush every two to three months
- Flossing once every day
- Avoiding using excessive toothpaste when brushing
- Using a mouthguard if you grind your teeth
- Avoiding acidic and sugaryy drinks and foods
- Developing a good dietary habit
- And, going routine dental checkups
If your tooth is highly sensitive for more than one week or more, it is always good to consult a dental professional for help. Do not try to diagnose or treat the problem yourself as it could be a sign of more serious dental problems.