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Sensitive Teeth: Causes and Solutions

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One in eight people suffer from sensitive teeth — that's about 40 million Americans. Exposed tooth roots or worn tooth enamel can often cause this uncomfortable sensation. A cracked tooth, gum disease or cavity can also result in sensitive teeth. If you experience this condition, don't worry. There are a number of solutions that can solve this problem.

 

What Causes Sensitive Teeth?

There are various factors that cause sensitive teeth. People who suffer from this condition will often feel a sharp, painful sensation in their mouth after consuming certain foods or drinks or when using certain products such as teeth bleaching kits.

"Tooth sensitivity, or 'dentin hypersensitivity,' is exactly what it sounds like — pain or discomfort in the teeth as a response to certain stimuli, such as hot or cold temperatures," says Healthline.

Some of the most common triggers for sensitive teeth include hot drinks like tea and coffee and cold foods like ice cream.

 

[RELATED: Dental Care for Coffee Drinkers… Because Quitting Coffee Isn’t an Option!]

 

People with sensitive teeth often have thin tooth enamel — the hard surface layer of your teeth. Brushing your teeth with a hard toothbrush or grinding your teeth can wear down your tooth enamel and cause a painful sensation.

"Having a conversation with your dentist is the first step in finding relief from your discomfort," says the Colgate Oral Care Center. "Describe your symptoms, tell your dentist when the pain started and let him or her know if there's anything that normally makes it feel better, such as warm compresses."

 

Sensitive Teeth: The Solutions

Here are a few ways you can reduce the discomfort from sensitive teeth.

Don't Brush Your Teeth Too Hard

Brushing your teeth too hard can wear down your tooth enamel and cause teeth sensitivity. If you have a hard-bristled toothbrush, swap it for a softer one. You'll find these in most supermarkets and drugstores. Also, check out these tips for properly brushing your teeth!

Wear a Mouthguard

Grinding your teeth can also cause sensitive teeth. If you wake up with a sore throat and jaw, you might be clenching your teeth in your sleep. Visiting your dentist can solve this issue. Your dentist might suggest that you wear a mouthguard when you sleep to stop you from grinding your teeth.

Use a Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth

Certain kinds of toothpaste can reduce the pain and discomfort associated with sensitive teeth when used over time. These contain desensitizing agents which can help with your condition. There are a number of toothpaste manufacturers who make toothpaste for sensitive teeth.

Visit Your Dentist More Frequently

Many people put off visiting the dentist. However, regular dental checkups will improve your overall oral health and prevent sensitive teeth. Your dentist will recommend treatments and products that will solve the issue and look for signs of tooth decay and worn enamel.

Be Careful When Whitening Your Teeth

Teeth bleaching products can often cause sensitivity. That's why it's important to talk to your dentist before you whiten your teeth. Using these products less frequently might reduce pain and discomfort.

 

Do you suffer from sensitive teeth? Follow the tips on this list and you can reduce the painful sensation associated with this condition. It's always a good idea to visit your dentist on a regular basis to prevent this problem in the first place and to identify any dental-related conditions that could be causing your sensitive teeth.

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