How Do I Know If I Have Sensitive Teeth?
Is the taste of ice cream or a sip of hot coffee sometimes a painful experience for you? Does brushing or flossing make you wince occasionally? If that's the case, you may have very sensitive teeth.
Possible causes include:
Tooth decay (cavities)
Worn tooth enamel
Exposed tooth root
In healthy teeth, a layer of enamel protects the crowns of your teeth--the part above the gum line. Beneath the gum line, a layer called cementum protects the tooth root. Under both the enamel and the cementum is dentin.
Dentin is less dense than enamel and cementum and contains microscopic tubules (small hollow tubes or canals). When dentin loses its protective covering of enamel or cementum these tubules permit heat and cold foods to reach the cells and nerves inside the tooth. Dentin may be exposed when gingiva recedes. The result can frequently become hypersensitivity.
Sensitive teeth can be treated, but the kind of treatment depends on what's causing your sensitivity. Your Oxnard dentist might suggest one of a range of remedies:
Desensitizing Toothpaste - This contains compounds which help prevent transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the sensitive core, and usually requires several applications before the sensitivity is decreased.
Fluoride Gel - A technique which fortifies tooth enamel and lowers the transmission of sensations.
A Crown, Inlay or Bonding - These can be utilized to correct decay or a flaw that results in sensitivity.
Surgical Gum Graft - If gum tissue has been lost from the origin, this will protect the origin and reduce sensitivity.
Root Canal - If sensitivity is severe and persistent and cannot be treated by other methods, your dentist might recommend this remedy to get rid of the problem.
Proper dental hygiene is the key to preventing sensitive-tooth pain. Ask your dentist in Oxnard, CA if you have any questions concerning your dental hygiene routine or concerns about tooth sensitivity.