You may know a thing or two about dental decay, as it is one of the most common oral problems in dentistry. However, aside from that, how many other dental problems do you know? Many people suffer from teeth sensitivity, but rarely does anyone regard it as an oral problem. Surprisingly, dentists in Mesa will tell you that it is a major oral problem, reported so frequently by patients. Perhaps one of the ways to know whether you have the problem is to understand what it is like to have teeth sensitivity. This article should help you understand this and so much more about this oral problem.
What Is Tooth Sensitivity?
It is a dental condition that causes pain and discomfort with changes in temperature. The medical term for this problem is dentin hypersensitivity. Ideally, pain and discomfort realized when you eat hot or cold foods can be as a result of dental decay. However, in some cases, it is dentin hypersensitivity. Before you look into dental emergency and try it out, understand more about this condition.
More About Dentin Hypersensitivity
This condition is caused by teeth responding to temperature-related stimuli, usually, hot and cold foods. Teeth sensitivity is common among patients, having that it can be a temporal discomfort or a chronic problem. If your discomfort continues over a long period, it could be a chronic condition. Otherwise, the pain or discomfort comes and disappears on its own.
Further, this sensitivity can be experienced on a single tooth or multiple teeth. ultimately, your experience will differ from that of other patients, depending on the underlying cause.
Diagnosis of Sensitive Teeth
When you reach out to your dentist with complaints of teeth sensitivity, there is a reasonable explanation for it. The condition happens when the dentin layer of your teeth is exposed on the outside. Ideally, the enamel, which is the outermost layer, is meant to cover the dentin. The function thereof is to protect the dentin from damage, having that it is softer than the enamel.
The dentin is home to thousands of microscopic channels that lead directly to the central part of the tooth, the pulp cavity. This means that the dentin is directly linked to the nerve system of your teeth. If therefore, the enamel structure is damaged, then the dentin is exposed to the stimuli in the oral cavity, as well as the nerves housed in the pulp cavity. This is why you experience sensitivity, as a response of the nerves to the stimuli.
Besides, the root part of your teeth is sensitive to the crown. The gum tissue acts as the layer of protection for your teeth’s roots, protecting them from damage. Without this protection, your teeth will succumb to sensitivity.
Causes of Teeth Sensitivity
Different issues have been linked to causing this condition. The common causes, however, include:
- Thinning of the enamel – the enamel is the outermost layer of the teeth, followed by an underlying layer of dentin. Since the dentin is softer than the enamel, the enamel is there to protect it. However, when your enamel thins out, it exposes the dentin, which is why you experience sensitive teeth.
- Receded gums – the roots of teeth are usually protected by the gum tissue. In an instance where the gums are receded, the roots are exposed, causing hypersensitivity.
- Root erosion – this happens when the roots of teeth have been exposed for too long, more so following gum disease.
- Harsh and abrasive teeth brushing – either due to the bristles of the toothbrush, or the type of toothpaste.
- Excessive teeth grinding – causing enamel thinning
Symptoms of Teeth Sensitivity
Symptoms of this condition will differ from one patient to another. The most common ones are:
- Sharp sudden flashes of pain when exposed to cold, hot, or acidic foods.
- Sensitivity when brushing or flossing teeth
- Discomfort with exposure to air
Variety of Treatments for Tooth Sensitivity
Sensitivity on teeth cannot completely disappear. Treatments options are only there to reduce the severity of the symptoms and discomfort. Every dentist has a favorite and preferable method of treating teeth sensitivity, given that no one treatment works for every patient. Some treatments include:
- Using desensitizing toothpaste
- Using soft-bristled toothbrushes.
- Using fluoridated mouthwash frequently
- Getting treatment for teeth grinding
- Gum grafting
- Root canal therapy