Causes and treatments of tooth root sensitivity

Around 40 million Americans suffer from some kind of tooth root sensitivity.

It is characterized by a sharp flash of pain when teeth are exposed to heat, cold, acidic or sweet foods and even by cold air. Gone as quickly as it arrives, the pain is uncomfortable and unpleasant. So what causes tooth root sensitivity and what can we do about it?

Causes of tooth root sensitivity

The causes of tooth root sensitivity are many but include:

  • Brushing teeth too hard
  • Gum recession
  • Gingivitis
  • Periodontal disease
  • Damaged teeth
  • Worn teeth

Tooth sensitivity can also appear in the aftermath of some dental procedures but this should pass quickly.

Tooth root sensitivity appears when the protective layer of enamel on a tooth is worn away or damaged, exposing the softer dentin. It can also appear during gum recession as the roots of teeth are exposed. Dentin contains thousands of tiny tubules that right to the center of the tooth where the nerves are. The more these tubules are exposed, the more likely you are to experience tooth root sensitivity.

Treatments for tooth root sensitivity

Treatments for tooth root sensitivity depend entirely on the cause. It could be as simple as using a less abrasive toothpaste or changing your mouthwash. It could also require avoiding overly acidic or sweet foods or adapting your oral health regimen. It may also require intervention from your dentist.

Home interventions to tooth root sensitivity can include:

  • Changing brand of toothpaste
  • Using a softer toothbrush
  • Changing brushing style
  • Avoiding overly sweet or acidic foods
  • Using a mouth guard to overcome teeth grinding

In the vast majority of cases, a small change in your lifestyle can overcome tooth root sensitivity. If they don’t, we have a few options at our disposal to help.

Dental interventions can include:

  • Ozone desensitizing
  • Bonding, crowns or inlays to repair and protect teeth
  • Dental sealants
  • Chao PinholeTM Surgical Technique (PST)
  • Gum graft
  • Root canal surgery

Surgical interventions are only considered as a last resort. We would want to try everything else before performing a procedure to address tooth root sensitivity. However, the procedures we can perform are very effective at both tackling sensitivity and the underlying cause of it. The majority of dental treatments are simple and involve very little discomfort. For example, the new Chao Pinhole Surgical Technique (PST) has revolutionized the way we treat gum recession!

If you suffer from tooth root sensitivity or are looking for a holistic dentist in Denville, New Jersey, contact Aesthetic Family Dentistry today. We’re here to help.