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Sensitive Teeth

Sensitive Teeth


What you need to know about Sensitive Teeth

Have you ever experienced discomfort or agony after eating hot soup or ice cream? If so, you are not alone. While discomfort from eating hot or cold meals may indicate the presence of a cavity, it is also frequent in people who suffer from sensitive teeth.

Dentin hypersensitivity, also known as tooth sensitivity, is what it sounds like, teeth that become painful or uncomfortable in reaction to particular stimuli, such as hot or cold temperatures.

It can affect one tooth, many teeth, or all of your teeth, and it can be a short-term or long-term issue. While sensitive teeth might have a variety of causes, the majority of them can be readily remedied by changing your oral hygiene routine.


People who have sensitive teeth may feel pain or discomfort when certain triggers are present. This discomfort may be felt at the tooth roots of the troubled teeth. Among the most typical triggers are:

  • Hot food and drink
  • Cold foods and drinks
  • Cold air
  • Sweet dishes and drinks
  • Acidic foods and drinks
  • While performing routine dental cleanings, cold water
  • Flossing or brushing your teeth
  • Alcoholic-based mouthwashes

Over time, your symptoms could fluctuate without any apparent cause. They could be light or strong.


Make an appointment with your dentist if this is the first time you’ve noticed tooth sensitivity. Using our Healthline FindCare service, you may make a dental appointment with a professional in your neighbourhood. They can examine the condition of your teeth and search for any issues that might be causing the discomfort, such as cavities, loose fillings, or receded gums.

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During your regular teeth cleaning, your dentist can perform this. They’ll perform a visual inspection and clean your teeth. They might use dental tools to gently touch your teeth to check for sensitivity, and they might also request an X-ray to rule out other possibilities like cavities.


Due to their weaker enamel, some people are born with more sensitive teeth than others. The enamel is the tooth’s protective outer covering. The enamel of the tooth can frequently deteriorate as a result of:

  • Overly vigorous tooth brushing
  • Using a hard bristle toothbrush
  • Teeth-gritting and grinding during the night
  • Eating or consuming acidic meals and beverages on a daily basis

Tooth sensitivity can occasionally be caused by other conditions. For instance, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can result in acid reflux from the stomach and oesophagus, which over time may erode teeth. Acid can erode the enamel in conditions like gastroparesis and bulimia that frequently produce vomiting.

Gum recession can expose and unprotect some areas of the tooth, which can lead to sensitivity.

Sensitivity can be brought on by the dentin of the tooth becoming exposed as a result of tooth decay, damaged or chipped teeth, worn-down fillings, or worn-down crowns. If this is the case, you probably won’t feel sensitive in most of your teeth, just one particular tooth or area of your mouth.

Following dental procedures like fillings, crowns, or teeth whitening, your teeth may be momentarily sensitive. In this scenario, the affected tooth or teeth will only be sensitive to this particular situation. After a few days, this ought to stop.


The exposed root surfaces are impacted by tooth sensitivity. It happens when the enamel thins. Patients with mouth conditions such as sensitive teeth should refrain from eating hot and cold foods. If you have dental pain, you can have trouble biting, chewing, or even falling asleep at night.

When to call a dentist

It’s important to see the dentist as soon as possible if the pain or sensitivity gets so bad that it interferes with the patient’s ability to go about their everyday activities normally. It is crucial to see a dentist if your teeth are too sensitive for a number of reasons.

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You might attempt over-the-counter dental remedies if your tooth sensitivity is minimal.

Select toothpaste with the claim “specially formulated for sensitive teeth” on the packaging. These kinds of toothpaste won’t include any irritants, and they may even have desensitising chemicals that help prevent discomfort from reaching the tooth’s nerve.

Choose an alcohol-free mouth rinse when it comes to mouthwash because it won’t irritate sensitive teeth as much.

Brushing more delicately and with softer toothbrushes can also be beneficial. Soft toothbrushes will have appropriate labels.

These treatments often require numerous applications to be effective. Within a week, an improvement ought to be visible.

You might ask your dentist about prescription toothpaste and mouthwash if home remedies are unsuccessful. They could also use prescription-strength desensitising products or fluoride gel to apply in-office. These can support the enamel and safeguard your teeth.

Treating conditions that lead to tooth sensitivity

If underlying issues are the root of your tooth sensitivity, you should address them before they erode the enamel and harm your teeth.

Acid reducers can be used to treat GERD, and a psychiatrist should supervise bulimia treatment.

By brushing more softly and practising good oral hygiene, you can treat receding gums. Your dentist could suggest employing a gum graft if you are experiencing extreme sensitivity and discomfort as a result of significant gum recession. To safeguard the tooth, tissue from the palate is applied over the root during this process.

By being conscious not to do so during the day, you can teach yourself to stop clenching or grinding your teeth. Caffeine and stress reduction prior to bedtime can also assist you to avoid nighttime teeth grinding. If it doesn’t stop the grinding, you can wear a mouthguard at night to protect your teeth.


Speak to your dentist about a solution if eating is difficult due to your tooth sensitivity. There are numerous over-the-counter kinds of toothpaste and mouthwashes made specifically for sensitive teeth.

If neither of them works, ask your dentist about mouthwash and toothpaste on prescription. In order to receive treatment immediately and avoid difficulties, you should also schedule an appointment with your dentist if you see any cavities or probable root damage symptoms. These signs could consist of:

  • Dental discomfort that develops suddenly and has no apparent explanation
  • One tooth’s specific localised sensitivity
  • Harsher pain rather than softer pain
  • Your teeth’s outer surfaces begin to stain
  • Discomfort during eating or biting