Dr. Hanan A. Elsaie DDS,
one of America’s Top Dentists, Consumers’ Research Council of America, Guide to America’s Top Dentists

Dominion 1 Dental - Arlington, TX. Tel: (817) 784-7888

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Sensitive Teeth

How To Deal With Sensitive Teeth

 Sensitive Teeth are one of the common dental complaints of at least 45 million adults in the United States and 5 million Canadians. Patients that have sensitive teeth are prone to intense tooth pain especially when teeth are exposed to hot and cold food or beverages. Stimulation of cells within the tiny tubes located in the dentin is the cause of sensitive tooth. When the hard enamel of the tooth becomes thin or gums have receded, the tiny tube surfaces are exposed to pain.

Tooth sensitivity may increase upon the usage of toothpastes which contain ingredients that may be harmful to sensitive tooth. Ingredients found in whitening toothpaste and or sodium pyrophosphate (used as a buffer, an emulsifier, and a thickening agent, and is often used as a food additive; acts as a tartar control agent) are examples of harmful ingredients that causes sensitive teeth to be triggered. Sodium pyrophosphate prevents the calcium and magnesium from the saliva to deposit in the teeth which causes tooth sensitivity. Using hard bristled toothbrushes and brushing your teeth too hard can also cause tooth sensitivity.

 To reduce the risk of tooth sensitivity, always use desensitizing toothpaste, applying sealants and other desensitizing ionization and filling materials including fluoride given by your dentist. Avoiding the intake of acid-containing foods, tartar control toothpastes, and drinking diet soft drinks can also help in reducing tooth sensitivity. Visiting your dentist regularly is also a big factor in avoiding sensitive tooth. When symptoms of tooth sensitivity occur, visit a dentist immediately and ask for the proper diagnosis.

Symptoms of tooth sensitivity may be defined as a short sharp pain, which is usually initiated by hot or cold foods or exposure to cold air, aching often follows. Be sure to clarify exactly what you feel when you discuss the condition with your dentist.

If you are diagnosed with dentin hypersensitivity, your dentist may treat you in a variety of ways. Some dentists used desensitizing agent or a protective coating to your sensitive teeth. You may also be given a prescription of stannous fluoride gel or an over-the-counter desensitizing toothpaste containing fluoride and either potassium nitrate or strontium chloride. A dentist may also advice the patient to undergo eating and drinking diet. Acidic foods, highly concentrated foods, and flavored toothpastes are sources of irritation that is why, the dentist may also advice the patient to avoid eating and drinking for a short period of time. Dentists may also give you instruction to change oral hygiene habits that causes tooth sensitivity.