Most of us have noticed a little tooth sensitivity from time to time but you shouldn’t have to live with discomfort while eating and drinking normally. Here are a few reasons why your teeth might become sensitive.
Although cavities don’t always hurt right away, some of us begin having sensitivity as soon as the outer shell of our teeth become thin or worn out. You will definitely feel decay when the nerve of the tooth becomes infected, so you never want to wait long to get treatment when your dentist first tells you about a cavity.
When plaque bacterias process the sugars in our saliva and around our teeth, the by-product is acid. Acid etching draws out the protective mineral coating that keeps the enamel strong. This demineralization can lead to sensitivity to temperatures and sweets. If you remove the plaque well enough, this process will be minimized so greatly that even with your usual dental habits, your teeth will still feel more comfortable.
When the top and bottom teeth don’t work well together, a clenching or grinding habit may result. Our teeth can actually get beat up pretty badly during the nighttime grinding so we strongly recommend night guards.
Acidic Foods and Drinks
Any meal that raises the acid level of your mouth will cause temporary damage to your teeth. Fruits, sodas, tomato sauces and sugary snacks are examples of foods that can increase your risk for sensitivity and decay. It’s best to rinse with water after meals and we also recommend limiting drinks and snacks that have sugar and/or acids.
Sawing back and forth with a hard toothbrush and gritty toothpaste can definitely cause abrasion and the wearing away of enamel from mechanical forces. The roots of our teeth are especially delicate and will wear down much faster than the top part of the tooth.
The tale-tell sign of a crack is a distinct “zinger” when you apply pressure to a single tooth. Really, we would consider this a pain far beyond sensitivity, but many people try to rationalize this type of discomfort. If it hurts to bite, something’s not right!!!
Recent Dental Work
It is not uncommon to have some temporary sensitivity after having dental work completed. Your teeth are alive and contain nerve endings that can get overstimulated by vibrations and man made materials we need to place in order to fix the problem at hand. Usually, this type of sensitivity goes away within a few days. It’s important to stay in contact with us if things aren’t progressively feeling better.