What are the causes of teeth sensitivity?
A tooth is composed of three layers. The outer layer called the enamel helps protect teeth against temperature changes (hot and cold) or other factors that could cause sensitivity. As we get older, our enamel wears down. When teeth have little or no enamel, any type of temperature changes could cause sensitivity.
Other reasons for sensitive teeth are cavities, cracked or chipped teeth, a filling that is worn, and gum disease.
Normally if you have any type of gum recession, meaning your gums have worn down and the root of your tooth is exposed due to using a hard bristle toothbrush or brushing hard, you could develop tooth sensitivity.
The root of our tooth has no enamel protecting it. The only protection it has are the gums that cover that area. If there is no gum, the root becomes exposed and this is very painful.
How do you help prevent teeth sensitivity?
Here are 5 things to do to prevent teeth sensitivity:
- Don’t brush aggressively and hard. Always use a soft bristle toothbrush. Remember it’s not the harder you brush the better it is.
- Visit your dentist at least 2X a year. The dentist can tell you if you have any thinning of the enamel or any other problems that you need to watch.
- Don’t suck on acidic fruits such as limes and lemons. If you drink acidic drinks always rinse your mouth with water afterwards or use a straw. Rinse your mouth after eating sour candies as well. Acid in foods and drinks can cause enamel wear and erosion which is not reversible.
- Don’t chew on ice. Don’t use your teeth to open bottles, cans etc. This will cause breakage and damage to your tooth enamel permanently.
- Don’t use abrasive toothpastes, powders, DIY teeth whitening products and anything that could cause enamel wear.
How do you get rid of teeth sensitivity?
Here are 4 safest way to help get rid of teeth sensitivity safely:
- Use a safe toothpaste for sensitivity relief such as Dr. Brite sensitivity relief toothpaste at least twice a day. Dr. Brite sensitivity relief mouthwash is a great adjunct to use twice a day to help make your gums healthy and coat your roots and prevent sensitivity and pain if in some areas you have exposed roots or inflamed gums. Please make sure you read labels as many conventional sensitivity relief toothpastes in the market have very harsh chemicals and alcohol that worsen the problem instead of helping it.
- If your enamel is worn and your tooth sensitivity lasts over one minute, you need to visit your dentist to have them evaluate you for a bonding procedure (a preventative filling material applied on your tooth to act as your tooth enamel and help protect your tooth).
- If your tooth’s root is exposed meaning you have moderate to severe gum recession, you need to visit your dentist and get evaluated for surgical gum graft. This process could be very costly, my suggestion is trying to avoid it if possible.
- Warm salt water rinses are helpful to desensitize your tooth and help with sensitivity relief.
It’s not fun to have to deal with teeth pain, it’s best to use prevention and try to avoid it all together.
You can use Dr. Brite’s sensitivity relief toothpaste and mouthwash to help prevent sensitivity, or if you're looking for effective whitening products for sensitive teeth our extreme whitening kit, specifically made to be effective while being great for sensitive teeth by not using harsh chemicals.
Remember your bi-annual dentist visits and avoid any dental products that have harsh ingredients such as fluoride, alcohol, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), Sodium Lauryl Sulfate(or any form of sulfates), triclosan, carrageenan, artificial sweeteners and propylene glycol (see also 'How to Eat Sweets Without Damaging Your Teeth' post).
You will soon realize that almost all commercially available toothpaste has one or more of the above toothpaste ingredients in them. That is why Paris and I created Dr. Brite!
To your health,
Pooneh Ramezani, DDS
CEO Dr. Brite
1. Why have my teeth suddenly gone sensitive?
Dentin, or even the teeth's nerves, can be exposed when dental enamel wears away, causing sensitivity. You may experience an acute stinging sensation in your mouth after eating or drinking something extremely hot or cold.
2. How do you fix sensitive teeth?
Sensitive teeth can be caused by a wide variety of things, and the only way to treat it is through a detailed diagnosis and treatment plan. One of the main causes is bacterial or fungal growth, and that means that stronger treatments may need to be used. Some treatments include:
- Disclosing tablets
- Anti-bacterial mouthwash
- Anti-fungal mouthwash
- Anti-bacterial toothpaste
- Antibiotic gel
- Fluoride varnish
- Anti-inflammatory medicine
- Desensitizing toothpaste
- Root canal treatment
3. Can tooth sensitivity go away?
Tooth sensitivity can usually be alleviated and will go away depending on the source. Root canal therapy (RCT) and fillings can cause teeth to become sensitive, but this usually subsides on its own within a few days or weeks.
4. When should I be worried about sensitive teeth?
Sensitivity can be caused by decay, broken teeth, and worn fillings. It may be time to see a dentist if you notice that the sensitivity is concentrated in one area of your mouth.
5. What deficiency causes sensitive teeth?
Vitamin B. Vitamin B deficiency can cause toothaches, receding gums, and an overall sensitivity of the mouth's mucous membranes. Tablets of vitamin B complex are most effective when taken under the tongue. Mushrooms, pork, and fish are all good sources of B vitamins.