Tooth hypersensitivity, or sensitive teeth, affects nearly 40 million Americans and can make normal daily activities such as eating, drinking, and even breathing miserable. This short, sharp pain caused by exposure of the dentine most commonly affects people in their twenties and thirties. Dentine is a sponge-like material that contains small channels that connect the root canal space to the outside of the dentine. Thus, when dentine is exposed to hot, cold, or even air a painful response occurs. Tooth hypersensitivity can be caused by too little or too much brushing, poor dental hygiene, dental erosion, age, or tooth whitening.
The most common treatment of tooth hypersensitivity is the blocking of the small tubes that make up dentine. In an attempt to block these tubes, dental professionals will often suggest a fluoride varnish application at the site of pain. Fluoride creates a barrier on the surface of dentine, minimizing the feeling of discomfort. Many patients also find using a tooth paste designed for sensitivity to be helpful over a period of time. These pastes contain abrasive components that block the small tubes in dentine. They should be applied with a brush and should not be rinsed off with water.
Remember there are a number of options that can provide relief from sensitivity. Give the professionals at Axiom Dentistry a call and start enjoying that next bowl of ice cream this summer!