If you start to notice cold and hot food and drinks causing your teeth some discomfort, you may have tooth sensitivity that requires the attention of a dentist. Here are the most common causes of this uncomfortable feeling:
1. Using a Hard Toothbrush
A hard-bristled toothbrush and aggressive brushing wears tooth enamel, leaving nerves under the tooth vulnerable to bacteria in the mouth. Ask your dentist to recommend a toothbrush and toothpaste to use to reduce discomfort and prevent further damage to enamel.
Some food and beverages are highly acidic and cause enamel erosion. Citrus fruit and juices, soft drinks, yogurt, pickled products, aged cheeses, and tomatoes are a few acidic foods that may add to the development of tooth sensitivity.
3. Tooth Decay
Problems that expose the dentin of teeth (the sensitive layer under the enamel) also cause sensitive teeth. Leaky or worn tooth fillings, decay, and broken teeth likely have exposed nerves which can create hypersensitivity.
4. Recessed Gums
When gum tissue surrounding teeth starts to pull back, exposing the highly sensitive areas of the tooth (like the roots), the condition is referred to as “receding gums.” When this occurs, gaps between the teeth and gum line will start to form, allowing bacteria to build, resulting in damage to gums and teeth. Sensitive teeth may be a clue that your gums need expert help.
5. Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding (“bruxism”) leads to sensitive teeth by damaging enamel. An abnormal bite or crooked teeth may also cause upper and lower teeth to grind, exposing dentin.
Overly-sensitive teeth are uncomfortable and often painful. They can prevent you from enjoying eating and limit other activities. Make an appointment at Lambton Family Dental if you’re suffering from tooth sensitivity. We can be reached at (519) 344-5747 to help you with any tooth or gum pain.