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    Sensitive Teeth


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    You have sensitive teeth if you experience sudden pain and discomfort when you take hot or cold foods and drinks. Although temporary tooth sensitivity is common and may not be a serious cause, sensitive teeth can indicate a more severe dental condition. Eating, drinking, and brushing can cause pain when you have sensitive teeth.

    Tooth sensitivity may result from exposed tooth roots, receding gums, cavities, and tooth injuries. While sensitive teeth can cause severe pain and discomfort, home remedies and in-office treatment options exist. The proper treatment option for your sensitive teeth will depend on your condition’s underlying cause and severity.

    The treatment options for tooth sensitivity could include fluoride treatment, root canal, desensitizing toothpaste, or even gum grafts. If you are battling the effects of sensitive teeth, you will benefit from the top-notch dental services we offer at The Lakewood Dentist. Our reliable dentists will assess your condition and recommend the best treatment for your sensitive teeth. We serve clients seeking dental care in Lakewood, CA.

    What are Sensitive Teeth?

    Tooth sensitivity is a common dental problem that causes severe pain and discomfort. Sensitive teeth could mean anything from a mild twinge to severe discomfort that lasts several hours. Tooth sensitivity can be a problem for anyone but is common in individuals between the ages of twenty and forty.

    You can suffer from sensitive teeth when the layer of the tooth enamel that protects the dentin is exposed to outside factors. Sometimes, tooth sensitivity is an indication of a more severe dental complication. Sensitive teeth are characterized by pain and discomfort triggered by:

    The severity of the pain and discomfort from sensitive teeth varies depending on the condition’s specific cause. Sometimes, the symptoms could be mild, while other times prevent you from eating or drinking comfortably.

    Common Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

    Several factors could contribute to the development of sensitive teeth. Understanding the exact cause of your condition is critical to determining the right treatment option. The causes of tooth sensitivity include:

    Brushing Too Hard

    Brushing your teeth at least twice daily is essential for maintaining good oral hygiene and health. However, brushing your teeth too hard or using a hard-bristled toothbrush can damage the tooth enamel. This will result in exposure to the dentin and eventually cause tooth sensitivity. Additionally, brushing too hard can cause the gums to recede and expose the sensitive part of the tooth.

    Gum Recession

    You suffer from receding gums when the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth and exposes the root. Gum recession could result from several factors, including age, gum disease, or genetics. Gum recession can affect one or multiple teeth and varies in severity. You are at a high risk of developing receding gums under the following circumstances:

    The sensitivity of gum recession could be prolonged since the receded gums do not grow back. When you visit your dentist with symptoms of sensitive teeth, the dentist could perform a routine examination and diagnose gum recession. In this case, you will need more extensive treatment.

    Cracked Teeth

    You can suffer from a broken or fractured tooth due to teeth grinding, trauma, or age. Sometimes, tooth cracks are small and harmless, while the cracking is severe in other cases. While anyone can crack a tooth, tooth fractures are common among children and older adults. This is because a child’s teeth are still developing while older adults have reduced calcium, making them fragile.

    The tooth contains three main parts: the enamel, dentin, and pulp. The pulp contains blood vessels and nerves responsible for sensitivity. When a tooth fracture reaches the pulp, you can experience sensitivity to cold or hot foods and drinks. Common symptoms that could indicate that you have a cracked tooth include:

    To check whether your tooth sensitivity is related to a fracture, the dentist may perform a dental X-ray to check the extent of the fracture.

    Gum Disease

    Gum disease is a severe oral health condition caused by the accumulation of tartar and plaque around the gums and teeth. The bacteria from tartar causes swelling and irritation of your gums. In the early stages of gum disease, the condition can be reversed. However, when left untreated, the condition can cause severe complications.

    When you have gum disease, your gums could recede, exposing the tooth root to hot and cold temperatures. Additionally, the damage to ligaments and bones that support your teeth could contribute to the sensitivity. Coupled with the pain from gum infection, tooth sensitivity associated with gum disease could be unbearable.

    If your sensitive teeth are associated with gum disease, your dentist could recommend a wide range of treatment options to minimize the impact of the condition, including:

    Excessive Teeth Whitening

    Teeth whitening is a cosmetic procedure to restore the color of your natural tooth enamel. Your teeth could be discolored by smoking, consumption of beverages with a dark hue, and other dental complications. Teeth whitening products are available over the counter or by prescription from a dentist. Depending on the extent of your tooth discoloration and desired appearance, your dentist will recommend the correct whitening procedure.

    Everyone desires a white yearly smile, which can be achieved by whitening. However, excessive teeth whitening can damage your tooth enamel, which exposes your dentin and causes sensitivity.

    Tooth sensitivity, in this case, could be experienced immediately after applying the whitening agents and stopped after a while. Sometimes, the sensitivity is prolonged, making it unbearable to eat or drink. If you choose teeth whitening to restore your smile, a skilled cosmetic dentist can help you choose the right chemicals to minimize the sensitivity. Additionally, they can guide you through long-term cosmetic procedures like veneers and crowns to avoid constant teeth bleaching.

    Teeth Grinding and Clenching

    Teeth grinding is an oral health condition related to stress and anxiety. Most people who grind their teeth engage in the habit subconsciously during their sleep. Some indicators of teeth grinding include toothache, stiffness of the jaws, headache, and tooth sensitivity. The sensitivity associated with teeth grinding is a result of tooth enamel damage.

    Excessive teeth grinding can cause your teeth to crack, exposing the dentin to hot or cold temperatures. You are at an increased risk of teeth grinding if you are under stress, you are an alcoholic, or have conditions like obstructive sleep apnea.

    If you have been diagnosed with teeth grinding, you may require remedies like wearing a mouth guard to prevent further complications like sensitivity.

    Recent Dental Procedures

    Sometimes, tooth sensitivity is a side effect of different dental procedures. In such cases, you will experience sensitivity immediately after the procedure, which may be prolonged for weeks. Standard dental procedures that could cause sensitivity include deep teeth cleaning.

    During the cleaning procedure, the dentist must remove the tartar and plaque below your gums, which can expose the sensitive parts of the tooth. Other procedures that can cause sensitivity include dental fillings and scaling.

    Consumption of Acidic Foods

    Consuming acidic foods like tea, pickles, and citrus fruits can cause an eruption of your tooth enamel. With time, the protective layer of the tooth will be worked out, exposing the sensitive areas to extreme temperatures. You can protect yourself from sensitivity associated with acidic foods by cutting down on the

    Home Remedies for Sensitive Teeth

    Before you visit your dentist due to tooth sensitivity, you can try the following home remedies to lessen the discomfort from the condition:

    Treatment for Sensitive Teeth

    Tooth sensitivity can cause severe pain and discomfort, affecting your quality of life. When you consult your dentist with symptoms of sensitive teeth, the dentist will determine the underlying cause of your tooth sensitivity before recommending the right treatment option. Common treatments available for sensitive teeth include:

    Desensitizing Toothpaste

    Desensitizing toothpaste is a simple but effective way to handle tooth sensitivity that does not have a specific cause. Desensitizing toothpaste is designed with components that strengthen the tooth enamel, a protective layer for the nerves and blood vessels. This is done by blocking the tubules from the inner part of the tooth and preventing the nerves from activating.

    The components of desensitizing toothpaste that make it effective in managing tooth sensitivity include:

    Depending on the severity of your symptoms, your dentist can help you choose the right desensitizing toothpaste.

    Fluoride Treatment

    Another treatment option that your dentist can recommend to manage the pain and discomfort of sensitive teeth is fluoride treatment. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps prevent cavities and builds strong teeth. Fluoride treatment is when a dentist applies high fluoride concentrations to your teeth for additional strength and to reduce the risk of cavities.

    The benefit of fluoride treatment to treat tooth sensitivity is that fluoride helps the body absorb minerals like calcium and phosphate better. Additionally, the fluoride strengthens the tooth enamel, making it less vulnerable to cavities.

    Although fluoride treatment may be effective in managing the symptoms of tooth sensitivity, you must understand the following potential side effects of the treatment:

    Dental Bonding

    Dental bonding is a cosmetic procedure used to improve the appearance of your teeth by covering minor dental flaws. In addition to brightening your smile, dental bonding can help cover exposed gums and strengthen the tooth enamel to reduce the symptoms of tooth sensitivity.

    Your dentist can recommend dental bonding for treating sensitive teeth if the sensitivity results from tooth cracks or receding gums that expose part of the tooth. The steps involved in dental bonding include the following:

    The benefit of bonding in reducing the effects of sensitivity is that the composite resin covers the nerve endings of the teeth. This protects the nerves from contact with extreme temperatures in your foods and drinks. After dental bonding, your dentist will give you aftercare instructions that you must follow to avoid chipping the bonded teeth.

    Before you undergo a dental bonding procedure, you must understand that the procedure is considered cosmetic and may not be covered by your dental insurance.

    Root Canal

    Root canal treatment is a procedure that involves the removal of the innermost part of the tooth, known as the tooth pulp. If you have sensitive teeth due to tooth pulp infection or extreme damage to the tooth, you may be a good candidate for a root canal. Before performing a root canal, your dentist will send you for X-rays to determine the damage to the tooth pulp.

    Root canal treatment is done through the following steps:

    Surgical Gum Graft

    Gum graft surgery is a procedure used to treat gum recession. Gum grafting covers the exposed tooth root by adding volume to your gum line and improving overall health. Exposed tooth roots are a common cause of sensitivity. This is because the extreme temperatures of foods or beverages can easily affect the nerves.

    You will be a good candidate for a surgical gum graft when your dentist determines that your sensitive teeth result from gum disease or other factors that expose your roots. The dentist will then send you to a periodontist, who will measure the extent of your gum recession and the size of your pockets. Gum graft surgery is done in the following steps:

    When your exposed teeth roots are covered using gum graft surgery, you could experience an improvement in the symptoms of your tooth sensitivity.

    Prevention of Tooth Sensitivity

    Treating sensitive teeth will depend on the nature of your symptoms and the specific cause. However, the condition could still recur after treatment. Some of the ways through which you can prevent tooth sensitivity include:

    Find a Competent General Dentist Near Me

    Tooth sensitivity can be a frustrating and painful condition that could affect your quality of life. Most people with sensitive teeth experience sharp pain when the teeth and gums come into contact with hot or cold foods and beverages. Additionally, the reaction can be triggered by sweet foods. Several factors could contribute to tooth sensitivity, ranging from teeth grinding to severe oral health conditions like gum disease.

    Fortunately, there are several available options to deal with tooth sensitivity. You can treat tooth sensitivity with mild symptoms using desensitizing toothpaste, salt water rinses, or fluoride treatment. However, severe cases may require more extensive treatment options, like a gum graft and a root canal.

    If tooth sensitivity persists after using the recommended home remedies, you must seek immediate dental care. At The Lakewood Dentist, we understand tooth sensitivity’s impact on oral health and well-being. We offer expert guidance and treatment services for all our Lakewood, CA, patients seeking treatment for sensitive teeth. Call us at 562-423-1441 today for expert dental services.

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    Find a Dentists Near Me

    Your smile is one of your defining features, and you should trust your oral and general health to an upstanding dental practice. The experienced team at The Lakewood Dentist is happy to be your family’s primary resource for practical and gentle dental services. With the proper care, you can enjoy a healthy, beautiful, and lasting smile, and we are excited to assist you in reaching your goals! Whether your smile needs restorative care to repair damaged teeth, cosmetic care to enhance your smile’s appearance, or you are looking for a new dentist to care for your family, we have your ultimate solution.

    Our friendly dentists welcome patients throughout Lakewood to discover why many choose us to meet their oral health needs. Whether you want to establish ongoing care, are new to the area, or want to discover how state-of-the-art technology can assist you feel and look your best, our practice has the technology, personalized approach, and skills you deserve. We will ensure you are comfortable during your visit.

    Contact our friendly team today at 562-423-1441 to learn more about our broad range of services and to get started!