If you wonder what may be causing your sensitive teeth, you are not alone. Many Americans face tooth sensitivity and are unsure what could be causing their pain. Some reasons for tooth discomfort can be easily changed and are not underlying diseases. Other reasons are more severe and may require patients to seek medical help from their dental professional. Luckily, with more advances in dental care and sensitive relief products, patients can use sensitive toothpaste and perform new oral regimens to eliminate their sensitive teeth and prevent them from reoccurring! Learn below some of the reasons for tooth sensitivity, how to treat it, and the best toothpaste for your sensitive teeth!

Reasons For Tooth Sensitivity

There are many reasons why your teeth become sensitive. That sharp rush of pain you may experience when eating or drinking something hot and cold can send people to the roof. Learn the reasons for your tooth sensitivity below and see what you should avoid in the future!

Teeth Grinding 

Many Americans suffer from teeth grinding, which is a leading cause of tooth sensitivity in their mouths. Grinding your teeth regularly in your sleep or during the daytime will wear down your enamel over time. This leaves the dentin less protected and puts your teeth at a higher risk of sensitivity to hot or cold things and to the touch. Teeth grinding can be treated with a mouth guard to stop the teeth from grinding against each other at night.  

Too Much Acid

A diet high in acidic foods and drinks or using an acidic mouthwash will cause your teeth to be more sensitive. Foods and beverages high in sugar or acid, such as soda, coffee, tomatoes, candies, citrus fruits, carbs, and more, erode the tooth enamel making your teeth more vulnerable to sensitivity. When biting into a popsicle or sipping a hot cup of tea, your teeth may shoot sharp sensations of sensitivity to those items. Additionally, using a mouthwash high in acid can also wear down your tooth enamel like foods. Using a high-acidic mouthwash for an extended period can worsen your sensitivity. When choosing a mouthwash, try to find one that does not contain alcohol or other harsh chemicals that could put your teeth at risk of sensitivity. 

Overuse Of Whitening Products

A widespread reason for tooth sensitivity traces back to teeth whitening. When we whiten our teeth, we place bleach or other whitening chemicals directly on the tooth, which significantly wears down the enamel over time. These ingredients are tough on the enamel, and with constant use of whitening, it increases the chance of sensitivity significantly. If we do not stop after seeing decent results for our teeth, our sensitivity will only build up, making it more unbearable to bite and sip our favorite hot and cold items. 

Gum Disease or Cracked Tooth

When we have a cracked or chipped tooth, it makes that tooth more vulnerable to bacteria, pain, and sensitivity. When a tooth is cracked, bacteria can travel through the dentin, which results in sharp pain and sensitivity to the touch or when drinking and eating specific foods. Another reason why your teeth may be sensitive is because of gum disease. Periodontal disease and Gingivitis are two types of gum disease many patients face. These diseases risk gum inflammation or recession, which results in high tooth sensitivity. This is because the teeth’ roots are exposed, so when patients eat or drink hot and cold items, they experience sharp sensitivity pains in that area. 

Brushing Teeth Too Hard

If you are unsure why you have sensitive teeth since you do not grind, have no gum disease, or use whitening products, you may be brushing your teeth too hard without noticing it. Brushing your teeth should be done lightly and slowly, not rushing through it. When you brush your teeth too rough or use a toothbrush with hard bristles, you can wear down your enamel which leads to sensitivity. When you brush aggressively, you also risk gum recession, exposing the root of your teeth and causing higher sensitivity. A solution to your hard brushing may be purchasing an electric toothbrush with a soft and comfortable tip for your mouth and gums. This will help you avoid harsh brushing and allow the brush to guide your brushing, giving you a soft yet effective brushing experience. 

Treatment For Sensitive Teeth

To treat the sensitivity in your mouth, try avoiding the above items as much as possible. It may be hard for those with a sweet tooth who love to eat or drink sugary and highly acidic foods and drinks. Of course, avoiding that food and beverages is not recommended, but eliminating some items in our diet as needed if experiencing large amounts of sensitivity. When whitening your teeth, try to build up your tolerance to the product and stop once you see results you like. If you enjoy whitening your teeth often, try to find whitening products with fewer sensitivity reactions or find a natural way to whiten your teeth at home. Sensitive toothpastes are also a great option to add to your dental routine. Brushing with trusted toothpaste brands for sensitivity will relieve most patients within a few uses. Additionally, you may talk to your dentist if your sensitivity persists, and they can guide you in the right direction for your treatment. 

The Best Toothpaste For Sensitive Teeth

Many toothpaste brands are well-known for their sensitivity relief. More and more toothpaste brands are coming out with newer options making it hard to find the perfect sensitivity relief for patients. When choosing the best option for you, it comes down to your personal preference. Some brands offer a safer, cleaner, and organic option for sensitivity, while others stay with their tried and true formula. Below are some of the best toothpaste brands for your sensitivity. Learn more about each option and why these are considered some of the best sensitive toothpaste brands!

Contact Dr. Emma Wu For Tooth Sensitivity Dental Care 

If you have sensitive teeth and need professional care, contact Dr. Emma Wu in North Andover, MA for an oral exam. Sometimes tooth sensitivity is a sign of an underlying issue that requires dental attention. Our team of professionals is dedicated to providing comfort during and after your appointment. Learn more about the best toothpastes for sensitive teeth, or click to schedule an appointment for a dental consultation on why your mouth, teeth, and gums may be sensitive. 


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