Do you notice a sharp, jolting pain in your tooth when you bite into food? This excruciating sensation is known as tooth sensitivity. Though the pain usually fades with the removal of the food, you should not think you can tolerate the condition.
The intermittent pain signifies a type of damage to your enamel, the outer layer of your tooth. And this can often occur as an effect of a larger dental problem. Do not delay seeking an emergency dental evaluation from your dentist about this problem.
You can feel more inclined to seek this urgent dental care when you know more about this oral health concern. Read on to find responses from your dentist to frequently asked questions regarding tooth sensitivity.
Why Do Teeth Feel Sensitive?
Tooth sensitivity pain occurs when damage to a tooth’s enamel, the outermost layer, exposes nerves within the interior of the tooth. Then if an external stimulus, like a food item, touches these nerves, it transmits a signal of pain to the brain. The sensation will stop with the removal of the stimulus, hence its intermittent feeling.
Tooth enamel can erode or wear down for a number of reasons, including habits like teeth grinding or consuming acidic foods and drinks. Dental problems like tooth decay will also eat away at enamel to result in enough damage to cause the uncomfortable symptom of sensitivity.
Once gone, enamel will not regenerate. So you will need to seek treatment from your dentist to eradicate the pain and restore the tooth’s structure. Do not delay because the symptom also points to vulnerability to other problems for your smile.
Can My Dentist Treat Tooth Sensitivity?
A dentist cannot help enamel regrow. But they can treat tooth sensitivity by replacing weakened enamel and addressing underlying dental problems that caused this damage. Treatment for sensitivity pain will therefore depend on the root cause your dentist finds during an evaluation.
Mild cases of tooth sensitivity can be resolved by using a desensitizing toothpaste. This product contains ingredients that block exposed nerves from sending pain signals so that you do not feel discomfort.
If a cavity causes this symptom, the dentist can treat the decay with a dental filling, which will also stop tooth sensitivity. A dentist may also replace lost enamel using a dental crown. This ceramic cap covers the entire surface of a tooth and stays in place with dental cement for long-lasting protection.
Can I Prevent Sensitivity in Teeth?
Ideally, you should steer clear of tooth sensitivity and enamel damage in the first place by taking preventative measures when it comes to oral health care. Your diet can influence your enamel health, so limit acidic foods and beverages to preserve your smile. Sugar will also become acidic and hurt your teeth, so avoid added sugar when you can to keep your teeth strong.
Practice good oral hygiene too to remove plaque in a timely fashion before natural oral bacteria can harm your dental structure. Brush your teeth twice a day, floss each day, and attend routine teeth cleanings at your dentist’s office.