Does it hurt your teeth when you eat or drink cold foods and beverages? Do you sometimes have sudden, sharp tooth pain? Sensitive teeth are a common problem for many patients. However, they may not know why they have sensitive teeth or how they can reverse their sensitivity. Here you can learn about the common causes of tooth sensitivity and how we can treat sensitive teeth in our Lilburn, GA dental office.
Causes of Sensitive Teeth
There are several common causes of tooth sensitivity:
Cavities are holes or pits in the tooth enamel. Patients with a dental infection can experience tooth pain once harmful bacteria enter the tooth. Harmful bacteria affect the nerves, blood vessels, and cells within the tooth, also known as the dental pulp.
Worn or Damaged Teeth
Patients who experience toothaches and pain when they drink cold water or brush their teeth can have tooth wear. Additionally, patients with TMD are more likely to experience tooth wear if they clench and grind their teeth. Temporomandibular joint disorders can wear down the enamel and lead to chronic tooth pain. If a patient has a dental injury, like a broken or chipped tooth, they can experience sensitivity and pain in that tooth. Dental injuries expose the dentin underneath the enamel, which is more sensitive.
Decay not only affects the tooth enamel. Harmful bacteria can spread to the gums. Over time, harmful bacteria form plaque and tartar which irritates the gum tissues and teeth. Once gum irritation becomes gum disease, patients can experience gum recession, which exposes the tooth roots. Many patients with gum disease have sensitive teeth and gums because the disease leaves the tooth roots exposed.
Treating Sensitive Teeth in Lilburn, GA
Root canal treatment is the best option if patients have a cavity or decay that has entered the tooth. A root canal removes the infected dental pulp and cleans the tooth chamber. Then, we can seal the tooth with a dental filling. The filling ensures that bacteria do not enter the disinfected, clean tooth.
We can also create custom nightguards to protect worn teeth and treat TMD. Bite correction therapy is also a good idea for TMD patients. We can cover worn or damaged teeth with dental crowns or porcelain veneers. Covering worn teeth adds structure to the bite and can also prevent harmful habits like teeth clenching and grinding.
For patients with gum disease, we recommend deep cleaning treatment. Scaling and root planing removes decay-causing bacteria from the teeth and gums. Our hygienists use dental tools that can reach areas of the mouth that can be hard to clean for many patients.
Other possible treatments for patients with sensitivity include fluoride gel and desensitizing toothpaste. Fluoride gel strengthens the enamel and helps reduce sensitivity. Desensitizing toothpaste blocks sensation from the enamel to the tooth’s nerves.
Do you have tooth pain or sensitivity? Call Dr. Harry McCool at [new_patient_phone_span] or request your next dental appointment on our website. We are always happy to help our patients solve their dental problems.