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Common Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Brunette woman cringes in pain and touches her cheek due to sensitive teeth against a pink wall

Do your teeth feel sensitive when you bite down, chew, or eat hot or cold foods and beverages? There are many factors that could be causing your tooth sensitivity. Read on to explore different causes for sensitive teeth. We also suggest some remedies to reduce sensitivity.

  • Improper Brushing

If you brush your teeth too roughly or use a hard-bristled brush, you may be damaging and wearing down your enamel. When enamel weakens, your teeth are more sensitive. Try using a soft-bristled toothbrush and less force when cleaning your teeth.

  • Cavities

When bacteria consume your dietary sugar, they create acidic byproducts that damage your tooth enamel. Permanently damaged enamel results in a hole, called a cavity. Decay and cavities can cause sensitive teeth and lead to infection.

  • Gum Recession

Receding gums can be caused by a variety of factors, including aggressive brushing or gum disease. Gum recession exposes tooth roots which can make teeth very sensitive to hot and cold drinks, cold air, acidic foods, and more.

  • Chipped or Cracked Teeth

Do you have a chipped or cracked tooth? If so, your sensitive inner tooth may be exposed. Bacteria can also enter your tooth, causing a painful infection. Root canal therapy or a dental crown may be needed to repair and protect your tooth.

  • Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding wears away at your teeth over time and can lead to enamel erosion and severe tooth damage. If you suffer from teeth grinding and clenching, we recommend getting fitted for a custom nightguard to protect your teeth. This cushion between your teeth will prevent long-lasting damage and reduce sensitivity.

  • Whitening Products

Bleaching gel can cause teeth to become temporarily sensitive. While the mechanism is not entirely understood, the bleaching products may cause mild demineralization of the enamel. However, this resolves within a day or two.

If you are suffering from severe tooth sensitivity, one of our CarolinasDentist offices can help reduce your pain. Schedule an appointment with our team to determine the cause of your sensitive teeth and how to treat them. Contact us today!


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