Sensitive Teeth – what’s the cause and how to treat it

For those with sensitive teeth, almost every activity will cause pain – from brushing and flossing, to drinking and eating. And although the tooth pain is temporary, it’s still a shock. Sensitive teeth are usually the result of either tooth enamel that is worn away, or tooth roots that are somehow exposed. But sometimes, it’s another issue that causes pain, like a chipped tooth or cavity. That’s why it’s good to have the condition properly diagnosed.

When sensitive teeth are of concern, a visit to the dentist is a good first step. It’s important to assess and diagnose the condition, and to come up with a dentist-recommended plan of attack. It may be as simple as just using special toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth. Or it may be suggested that a fluoride treatment would strengthen the tooth enamel. In some cases, the dentist may recommend a “bonding resin” for roots that are acutely sensitive.

For many patients with sensitive teeth, the dentist could well suggest a more enhanced approach to oral health. That would include brushing several times a day, using a softer toothbrush, and thorough flossing every day. And for patients who suffer from grinding, a mouth guard might be the best recourse. At the dentist’s office, tooth grinding will soon be evident as a cause of sensitivity – a cracked or chipped tooth could easily be the cause.

The patient with sensitive teeth should avoid acidic drinks and foods because these have a deteriorating effect on tooth enamel. To be sure, the dentist will have some common sense solutions, and some tips for better health maintenance. And because of the “triggers” that exacerbate the tooth pain, avoiding problem foods and drinks is always a good option. It means that those with tooth sensitivity have to be cautious and careful day-to-day.

Whether its wear and tear, tooth decay, or something serious like gum disease, it’s vital for the dentist to diagnose sensitive teeth – there’s no reason for a manageable problem to deteriorate into something serious. And in so many cases, the treatment plan is simple and easy: brushing more gently; flossing thoroughly; using special toothpaste; and avoiding tartar-control products. In fact, using a good fluoridated mouthwash is good daily routine.

All things considered, good oral hygiene and regular dental visits is key. In the short term, daily routine and proper diet are necessary. For the long term, it’s important that the dentist keep a watchful eye on changes and developments. When tooth sensitivity persists, it may be time to better protect exposed root surfaces – this could be done using “dentin” sealers; “white” fillings; or a fluoride “varnish” – each of them prescribed by the dentist.

For those with sensitive teethissues, the dental team at the Accolade Dental Centre can offer a treatment plan to suit. We provide the highest level of oral health care, with patient well being at the top of the list. And while we strongly believe ina preventive approach to dental health, we also rely on early, accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.