7 Common Causes of Sensitive Teeth

Sensitive Teeth West Dentist Columbus Oh

7 Common Causes of Sensitive Teeth

Sensitive Teeth Dentist West Columbus Oh

Tooth sensitivity can be difficult to deal with, especially when something as simple as drinking cold water on a hot day can cause pain. Because this issue is so widespread amongst adults, it’s important to have our Columbus dentist examine your teeth and offer advice on how to relieve nagging symptoms.

Here are 7 possible explanations for your teeth sensitivity and how you can reduce discomfort.

You May Have Sensitive Teeth Because You’re:

1. Brushing Too Hard

While brushing your teeth thoroughly is important for good oral health, brushing too hard can actually cause damage. Using too much force while brushing or using hard-bristled toothbrushes can wear down your enamel, the protective outer layer of your teeth.

When enamel is removed, dentin is exposed which is the softer, less dense layer underneath. Dentin has tiny canals, or tubules, in it which allow fluids to pass through. Worn teeth with exposed dentin have a heightened reaction to heat and cold which causes the nerves in your teeth to feel sensitive.

Enamel also doesn’t grow back once it’s gone so take care of what you’ve got! Dr. Gibson recommends gently brushing with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to avoid experiencing sensitivity.

2. Consuming Acidic Foods or Beverages

Eating a balanced diet isn’t just important for your overall health, it’s extremely important for your oral health as well. Consuming too much sugar will cause the bacteria in your mouth to produce acids that can erode your teeth.

After a certain amount of exposure to these acids, your teeth will become sensitive as the nerves become exposed. Keeping sugary and acidic foods or drinks to a minimum will reduce the risk of your teeth becoming sensitive. Remember to also brush at least twice a day and floss once daily to thoroughly clean teeth.

3. Grinding and Clenching Your Teeth

Many people unconsciously grind and clench their teeth, especially while they sleep. Unfortunately, excessive teeth grinding and clenching can wear down your enamel over time. Just like brushing too hard and eating harmful foods, grinding your teeth allows for access to your nerves, ultimately resulting in sensitivity. Wearing a protective night guard can help prevent you from grinding your teeth while you sleep.

4. Improperly Whitening Your Teeth

While professional teeth whitening may give you a beautiful smile, DIY or “natural” whitening methods can cause damage to your teeth. Many tips online claim whiter teeth are possible if you rub acidic fruit (or their peels) on your teeth. Others highlight ingredients like activated charcoal, turmeric, coconut oil, or baking soda and promise they’ll help lift yellow stains.

Many of these methods are not backed by credible evidence and often don’t do much for the shade of your smile. What they do result in, however, is worn enamel, tooth decay, and you guessed it, sensitive teeth. If you’re interested in brighter teeth, ask Dr. Gibson about our in-office and at-home teeth whitening services.

5. Allowing Plaque to Build Up

Plaque is constantly forming in your mouth, and if it’s not taken care of, it can lead to sensitive teeth. Plaque not only eats away at your teeth but also at your gums, causing sensitivity in both. To reduce plaque buildup, practice a good oral care routine that includes thorough daily brushing and flossing.

6. Ignoring a Cracked or Chipped Tooth

Cracked and chipped teeth can be rather painful and particularly sensitive. When a tooth is cracked or chipped, the sensitive layer of your tooth is exposed, causing you to feel pain and discomfort. Schedule a visit with Dr. Gibson as soon as possible to address the problem before it gets worse. We can examine the tooth and determine the most appropriate solution like a dental crown or cosmetic bonding.

7. Experiencing Gum Disease

Early stage gingivitis and more serious periodontitis can also cause tooth sensitivity. The gum line often recedes with gum disease, revealing the dentin in your teeth. Dentin is the tissue beneath tooth enamel that, when exposed, results in tooth sensitivity. Be sure to keep up with your oral care routine and see our dentist regularly to reduce your risk of developing gum disease.

Say Goodbye to Sensitive Teeth

If you’re experiencing tooth sensitivity, try following some of the suggestions listed above. Also, be sure to request an appointment with our dentist in Columbus, OH, so we can pinpoint the true cause behind your sensitive teeth and find a solution to alleviate discomfort. Call Gibson Dental today at (614) 878-9562.

This blog post has been updated.