What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

sensitive teeth

Tooth sensitivity can be a bothersome addition to your life, causing discomfort and disrupting daily routines. Understanding the various factors that contribute to tooth sensitivity is crucial for effective prevention and management. In this blog,  Dr. Browne and his team in Prairie Village, Kansas explore the common causes behind tooth sensitivity and provides insights into maintaining optimal oral health.

Exposed Tooth Roots

One primary cause of tooth sensitivity is exposed tooth roots. This can occur due to gum recession, often a result of aggressive brushing or gum disease. When the protective layer of enamel is diminished, the underlying dentin becomes vulnerable to external stimuli, leading to heightened sensitivity. Dental care practices that prioritize gentle brushing and regular dental check-ups can help prevent gum recession and reduce the risk of exposed tooth roots.

Worn Tooth Enamel

The erosion of tooth enamel is another leading factor in tooth sensitivity. Acidic foods and beverages, frequent consumption of citrus fruits, and conditions like acid reflux can contribute to enamel wear. Abrasive toothpaste and aggressive brushing can also accelerate enamel erosion. Maintaining a balanced diet, using enamel-friendly toothpaste, and adopting a gentle brushing technique are essential steps in preserving tooth enamel and minimizing sensitivity.

Dental Cavities

Cavities, or dental caries, are a common culprit behind tooth sensitivity. When bacteria penetrate the enamel and dentin layers, it can lead to inflammation and heightened sensitivity to temperature and touch. Regular dental check-ups are crucial for early detection and treatment of cavities, preventing them from progressing to a more severe stage and causing increased sensitivity.

Teeth Grinding

Bruxism, or teeth grinding, can contribute to tooth sensitivity over time. The constant grinding puts excessive pressure on the teeth, leading to enamel wear and potential exposure of the dentin. Wearing a night guard, managing stress, and seeking professional dental advice are effective strategies for addressing bruxism and reducing associated tooth sensitivity.

Cracks or Fractures

Teeth that are cracked or fractured can expose the sensitive inner layers, causing discomfort. This can result from various factors, including trauma, chewing hard objects, or large dental fillings. Seeking prompt dental care for evaluation and treatment of cracked or fractured teeth is essential in preventing further damage and alleviating sensitivity.

Do You Have Sensitive Teeth?

If you are experiencing tooth sensitivity, it is best to address it. Schedule a call with your Prairie Village, KS dental office at (913) 901-8585 to identify the underlying causes and work with your dentist to develop a personalized plan for managing and preventing sensitivity. A proactive approach to oral health can lead to a pain-free and confident smile.