As humans, we want to be in constant comfort and feel at ease. The worst thing for us is to feel any kind of discomfort or pain, especially physically in our bodies.
The sharp pain that is caused by having tooth sensitivity creates both extreme discomfort, and sometimes unbearable pain that can bring us to a halt and stop us in our tracks. Although our teeth and gums aren’t the largest parts of our bodies, they hold a lot of importance and mechanical function.
Tooth sensitivity or any kind of tooth pain stops us from enjoying a nice meal, having a wide and bright smile, and even talking with ease and effortlessly. Anyone who suffers from tooth sensitivity avoids daily activities such as consuming cold or hot drinks and foods, as well as brushing their teeth.
There are some dental conditions, such as holes or cracks in teeth, that cause tooth pain and sensitivity that won’t be resolved or relieved unless receiving professional dental treatment by a dentist.
There are however, very simple daily practices that can help in controlling tooth sensitivity and help prevent it as a dental issue all together.
What causes tooth sensitivity?
Our teeth contain a porous tissue called dentin, sensitivity in teeth occurs when this tissue is exposed. This dentin contains tubules which are microscopic channel pathways to the nerves of the teeth. Issues such as receding gum tissue or enamel loss can cause these dentinal tubules to be exposed, meaning nerves can be easily triggered by certain stimuli resulting in tooth sensitivity.
These exposed areas respond to extreme conditions such as hot and cold or very spicy or sweet foods. These are all triggers for tooth sensitivity, which causes a very sharp, sudden, and shooting pain in the tooth.
There are several factors that can contribute to tooth sensitivity and cause it to occur:
Grinding of teeth
Grinding your teeth too much and causing that friction can cause enamel to wear away, causing the dentin to become exposed.
Using too much force with a hard-bristle toothbrush when brushing teeth can wear down tooth enamel and cause the dentin tissue in teeth to become exposed, resulting in tooth sensitivity.
When gum tissue is inflamed and pulls away from the tooth, it leaves vulnerable areas exposed and higher chance of tooth sensitivity occurring.
Dental cleanings on treatments
You can experience temporary tooth sensitivity after a professional teeth-whitening treatment, it usually does go away and disappear shortly after the procedure is over.
Preventing tooth sensitivity
There are several simple steps that can be easily taken to prevent tooth sensitivity and make sure it is a pain that doesn’t have to be put up with.
Using a soft-bristle toothbrush
Around 80% of tooth sensitivity starts at the gum line, so it is crucial to use a toothbrush that is soft against the surface of the gums to avoid damaging them. Using a soft toothbrush will also prevent gum loss.
Brush with sensitivity toothpaste
Just like your toothbrush, it is important to use a toothpaste that is gentle to your gums and causes relief and protection for them. Using a specific toothpastes that removes plaque whilst targeting sensitivity at it’s sources, the gumline, is a very effective way to prevent tooth sensitivity.
Brush and floss regularly
Brushing and flossing twice a day is a daily routine that has great benefits. Not only does it clean your teeth and prevent the buildup of plaque but it is an effective way to prevent gum loss.
Clean mouth effectivity
It can be easy to miss those hard to clean areas in between teeth and gums. Brushing alone won’t reach those tight spots, that’s why it is important to add flossing and using a mouthwash to your oral cleaning routine.
Flossing reaches the tight spots in between your teeth, while rinsing with a mouthwash cleans across the gumline, helping to prevent any gum loss that could lead to future sensitivity issues.
Avoid acidic foods and drinks
Consuming too many foods and beverages that create high levels of acidity can be very damaging the health and well-being of your mouth, and wear away at the surface of your teeth and gums, causing the dentin tissue to be exposed.
If this happens over time and too much tissue is exposed or gum loss occurs, this can lead to severe tooth pain and sensitivity.
Helping sensitive teeth
Living with extreme tooth pain caused by sensitivity is no way to live. It is a debilitating pain that can stop you from getting on with everyday life, and enjoying the little things that usually bring you great joy and enjoyment in life.
If you do suffer from sensitive teeth it is important to include these daily steps into everyday oral care routine. Take simple steps such as, making sure to replace a regular brush with a softer toothbrush and use soft floss, and mouthwash containing ingredients targeted to treat sensitivity issues.
An effective method to treat tooth sensitivity is by also spreading sensitising toothpaste along the surface of the exposed cementum or dentin tissue before going to bed. Use a clean fingertip or cotton swab to rub the toothpaste directly and generously onto the exposed area or spot. This can help relieve the pain caused by tooth sensitivity by treating it, and preventing it from coming again in the future.